Jeff Gordon To Pace Indy 500 In Corvette Z06
Last weekend, the Toyota Mirai became the first hydrogen-fueled car to pace a NASCAR race, replacing the more common, V-8-powered Chevys and Fords for the Toyota Owners 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Richmond International Raceway. Now, it seems that things are back to normal in the U.S. racing scene, with IndyCar nominating the 2015 Corvette Z06 to pace the 99th running of the Indianapolis 500 on May 24th. Yay!
More good news comes from the fact that the Indy-liveried Z06 will be driven by four-time NASCAR Sprint Cup champion Jeff Gordon. The organizer’s choice isn’t surprising here, as Gordon is also a five-time Brickyard 400 winner, also held at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Gordon, now in his 23rd NASCAR season (man I feel old), has never competed in the Indianapolis 500, meaning he will turn his first laps during the famed event in a pace car.
"It’s great to have Jeff Gordon serve as this year’s pace car driver,” said Jim Campbell, Chevrolet U.S. vice president of performance vehicles and motorsports. “He is a true champion who has earned the respect and admiration of competitors and race fans alike."
Gordon, who is retiring from full-time NASCAR Sprint Cup racing at the end of the 2015 season, will also compete in the NASCAR Coca-Cola 600 the same day. The 43-year-old will fly to Charlotte Motor Speedway as soon as the checkered flag drops at Indianapolis. What a guy!
Continue reading to learn more about the Chevrolet Corvette Z06.
Why it matters
Arguably the hottest U.S.-built vehicle put on sale recently, the Corvette Z06 is the best choice for such an important racing event as the Indy 500. The nomination was actually foreseeable, as the Corvette has served as an Indy 500 pace car 13 times since 1978, more than any other vehicle in the race’s history. The Z06 was bound to lead the pack for "The Greatest Spectacle in Racing" in its first year on the market, and the fact that it will do so with Jeff Gordon behind the wheel makes it that much better.
Find out more about the Chevrolet Corvette Z06 in our detailed review here.