The Lightning item is the icon for the Lightning Cup.

Lightning Cup is a cup in the Mario Kart series. The Lightning Cup has appeared in five games: Mario Kart: Super Circuit, Mario Kart DS, Mario Kart Wii, Mario Kart 7 and Mario Kart 8. In Mario Kart: Super Circuit, it is the third cup in the game, but in Mario Kart DS, Mario Kart Wii, Mario Kart 7 and Mario Kart 8, it consists of retro tracks. It is the counterpart of Special Cup. In every Mario Kart installment, the Lightning Cup's emblem is the Lightning Bolt. 

Mario Kart: Super Circuit Mario Kart DS Mario Kart Wii Mario Kart 7 Mario Kart 8
Luigi Circuit SNES Choco Island 2 SNES Mario Circuit 3 Wii Koopa Cape DS Tick-Tock Clock
Sky Garden N64 Banshee Boardwalk DS Peach Gardens GCN Dino Dino Jungle 3DS Piranha Plant Slide
Cheep-Cheep Island GBA Sky Garden GCN DK Mountain DS Airship Fortress Wii Grumble Volcano
Sunset Wilds GCN Yoshi Circuit N64 Bowser's Castle SNES Rainbow Road N64 Rainbow Road

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