Corvette sets the pace for Indy 500Comment on this story
A specially-built 2014 Corvette Stingray will serve as the pace car for the 97th running of the Indianapolis 500 on Sunday 26 May - the 12th time a 'Vette has led the field to green, starting in 1978.
But what's really surprising is how standard the car is, considering it has to be almost up to race pace in front of some of the world's fastest single-seaters all the way round the Brickyard or risk fouling their sparkplugs and derailing the start of the race.
The Indianapolis pace car has a box-stock 6.2-litre LT1 engine rated at 332kW and a standard automatic transmission, as well as the optional Z51 track-orientated package. The only non-standard features are mandatory safety equipment and strobe lights.
It's finished in royal blue with the official Indianapolis 500 graphics on the doors.
Along with Chevrolet's return in 2012 as an engine supplier, the Corvette Stingray Pace Car extends a legacy at the Brickyard that dates to the racetrack's early days.
Chevrolet has a long shared history with the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The Bowtie Brand was founded in 1911, the same year as the inaugural 500-mile race, and the Chevrolet brothers - company co-founder Louis, Arthur and Gaston - all competed in early Indy 500 races. Arthur Chevrolet competed in the 1911 race and Gaston Chevrolet won it in 1920.
Chevrolet-powered cars have won 118 IndyCar races (including seven Indianapolis 500's) and seven Drivers' championships since Chevrolet began supplying engines to the series in 1986.
This year will be the 24th time a Chevrolet has served as pace car for Indianapolis 500, more than any other brand, starting in 1948 with a Chevy Fleetmaster. Of those seven have been Camaros and 12 (counting this one) Corvettes.