The reason I wrote “Corvette Pace Car” twice in my title is that there are going to be not one, but two, Corvette Indy Pace Cars this year. The car pacing the race will be a greenish Z06 that will use E85 ethonal gas similar to what the race cars run on. To me, the color of the car is as ugly as the fuel itself, which tends to eat right throiugh the old rubber hoses on antique cars. Emerson Fittipaldi will be driving the actual pacer and he will also sign all 500 copies of the second Indy Pace Car.
This second car will be a silver-and-black 30th Anniversary Commemorative Edition. The first Corvette Indy Pace Car, in 1978, was a black-and-silver T-Top that became infamous for being an expensive, but lousy, investment. They were supposed to make a limited number of them to make them instantly collectible, but when they began to sell like hot cakes, for above-window-sticker prices, Chevy decided to make more and more of them.
Today a nice ’78 Indy Pace Car looks pretty and will probably fetch decent money, but back in the day it came to be considered kind of a joke to pay lots of money to sock away a no-miles, supposedly “limited-edition” car that they kept making more copies of.
This is the fifth year in a row that the Corvette was picked to be pace car. I editorialized on that last year and I’m not going to do it again. Even though I like Corvettes, it gets a little boring to see them selected to be pace car every year. My guess is that they will break the string next year, because 2009 will be the 30th Anniversary of the “houndstooth” Camaro Pace Car. With a new Camaro coming out, it seems pretty easy to predict the future.