A new tradition started a few ago at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is to run a IndyCar race on the 2.439-mile road course as a warm-up to the Indianapolis 500 race that is held on Memorial Day weekend. This year, the fourth annual Verizon IndyCar Grand Prix takes place on Saturday, May 13th and a Corvette Stingray was selected as the Pace Car for that event.
Selected to drive the Arctic White Stingray Pace Car is retired Indianapolis Colts linebacker Robert Mathis, who spend his entire 14-year in the NFL playing for the team.
“Just when you think it couldn’t get any better, the city known as the Racing Capital of the World grants me a bucket list opportunity!” Mathis said. “Colts, Pacers, Fever, 11, Indians and racing fans all over the world, I will be your official pacesetter this Saturday for the Grand Prix! #IAmIndyAndIndyisMe.”
The Corvette Stingray is powered by the 460-horsepower LT1 and features the Z51 Performance Package, an 8-speed paddle shift automatic transmission, selective magnetic ride control, polished aluminum 19/20 inch wheels and Competition seats.
The Arctic White Corvette has a unique red hash mark and a blue hood strip, making the car somewhat similar to the official Grand Sport Corvette that will pace the 101st Indianapolis 500. A subtle graphic runs along the bottom of the doors proclaiming “Official Pace Car”.
“Robert Mathis is one of the most popular Colts ever, and his enthusiasm has made him a great ambassador for this city and its vibrant sports culture,” said J. Douglas Boles, Indianapolis Motor Speedway president. “He’s a perfect fit to lead The Greatest Drivers in Racing to the green flag at the IndyCar Grand Prix. We’re also grateful for our longstanding relationship with Chevrolet and can’t wait to see the 2017 Corvette Stingray Coupe at the front of the field this Saturday.”
Practice and qualifying will take place on Friday, May 12th. The green flag for the 85-lap Verison IndyCar Grand Prix drops at 3:330 pm ET on Saturday, May 13th.
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