A 2013 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 will lead the starting field of the 96th Indianapolis 500 to the green flag May 27 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. With its 638hp, the Corvette ZR1 is the most powerful production car ever to serve as the Official Pace Car for the Indianapolis 500. In fact, it will have more power than the actual racecars, whose V6 turbo engines are boosted to between 550-570hp for Indianapolis.
This will be the 23rd time a Chevrolet has paced "The Greatest Spectacle in Racing" and the 11th time a Corvette is serving as the Pace Car, both event records. The 2013 model year will be historic for Corvette, marking its 60th anniversary and the final year of production for the current generation.
"Corvette embodies pure performance, so the ZR1 is a perfect car to pace the most prestigious auto race in the world," said Jeff Belskus, Indianapolis Motor Speedway president and CEO. "Chevrolet is a great partner of the Speedway, and we share in the excitement of the upcoming 60th anniversary of the iconic Corvette brand. It's even more meaningful to see a Chevrolet pacing the field at Indy since Chevy has returned as an engine supplier for the IZOD IndyCar Series for the first time since 2005."
The ZR1 pace car will share similar features with the 60th Anniversary package available for all 2013 Corvettes, which feature an Arctic White exterior with a Blue Diamond leather-wrapped interior accented with suede; convertible models will receive a matching blue top. Further features include a ZR1-style rear spoiler, special badging, painted gray calipers, and the 60th anniversary logo on the center caps, the steering wheel, and the headrests. An optional graphics package adds full-length Pearl Silver Blue racing stripes.
Said Jim Campbell, Chevrolet vp of Performance Vehicles and Motorsports: "This is a truly momentous year for Chevrolet when it comes to performance, with our continued success on and off track, and especially with our return to the IndyCar Series, powering some of the fastest cars on the circuit. I can't think of a better way to mark the 60th Anniversary of Corvette than having it lead the starting field of the Indianapolis 500."
The celebrity driver of the pace car has not yet been named, but Food Network TV personality Guy Fieri is tipped to be the leading candidate.