2005 Indy 500 Pace Car
General Colin L. Powell, former U.S. Secretary of State, drove a 2005 Chevrolet Corvette convertible pace car to lead the field to the start of the 89th running of the Indianapolis 500 on May 29, 2005.
Neither Powell nor the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is a stranger to Corvette. For a record seventh time, Corvette paced the Indianapolis 500, and at the time of the race, Powell owned a 2005 Corvette coupe. This race was the track debut of the sixth-generation Corvette convertible. It marked the fourth consecutive year and 16th time overall that a Chevrolet has served as the official pace vehicle-the most appearances by any brand.
The 2005 Corvette that served as the Indy 500 Pace Car was virtually identical to the convertible models that were available through local Chevrolet dealerships. Because the 2005 production Corvette was so racing-ready with 400 horsepower capable of 186 mph and a 0-60 mph time of 4.1 seconds, class-leading aerodynamics, a suspension that can handle .98 Gs in cornering situations and large 18-inch front and 19-inch rear wheels, few changes were made to prepare it for this year's role.
Like race cars, the duties of a pace car can be long and strenuous. During the last three Indy 500 races, for example, the Chevy pace vehicles led the field for a combined 140 laps (350 miles) of the total 600 race laps (1,500 miles) and ran an average lap speed of 75 mph. Even during green-flag race conditions, the pace cars patiently run at idle ready for action at a moment's notice.
The 2005 Corvette convertible pace car featured a "Victory Red" paint treatment with a bright "Machine Silver Metallic" primary stripe down the center flanked by titanium and black accent stripes. The 2005 Indy 500 logo is on each door and is embroidered on the headrests while the Chevy red racing Bowtie appears at the top of the hood. The windshield also displayed Chevy's "An American Revolution" slogan, and the overall theme emphasizes Chevrolet's pride and passion for innovation, its success in motorsports and the energy surrounding the launch of 10 new car and truck products in 20 months.
For those enthusiasts hoping to snag a replica, once again, Chevrolet produced no replicas of this year's Pace Car to sell to the public. When will they remember that we are out here???
2005 made history, as Danica Patrick finished in fourth-place, the best ever by a woman in the “Greatest Spectacle in Racing.” She also led 19 laps in the No. 16 Rahal Letterman Racing Argent Pioneer Panoz/Honda/Firestone to become the first woman to lead in the race and was named JPMorgan Chase Rookie of the Year.
But at the end, the winner of this year's race was Dan Wheldon with his Andretti Green Racing Dallara/Honda.