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Opinion: The best official pace cars ever built for the Indy 500 were built by Chevy

For more than a century, the Indianapolis 500 has been the premier event in automotive racing, having hosted the best drivers and the fastest cars to ever compete in the sport. Every year, officials choose an official pace car that represents one of the greatest designs to hit the streets in the past 12 months.

Twenty-three of the past 96 Indy 500s have featured a Chevy as the car to pace the track before the big race. Of those 23, 11 have been Corvettes, making it an unrivaled nameplate in the world of Indy Racing.

Last year’s 2013 ZL1 Corvette was the fastest car to ever take the tarmac at Indy. This 60th Anniversary edition hardtop was a screamer with its 638 horsepower V8, making its bland appearance, with minimal decals and striping on the otherwise blank body, deceptively tame.

In 2011, the Camaro SS Convertible was the car chosen to pace Indy, striding menacingly around the track with its meaty tires powered by the same LS6 engine used in the C6 Corvette. With slick orange stripes and a pearly white base coat, this was probably the best looking pace car since the model that inspired the look in the first place.

The resemblance between the 2011 pacer and the 1969 Hugger Camaro is evident, as these two models share more than just a few key design cues. Despite the more than 40-year age difference between these two cars, they both look thoroughly modern on any roadway. The ’69 pace car was by far not only the best looking car to ever round the track at Indy, but it was also the prettiest Camaro to ever hit the streets.

The next Indianapolis 500 is less than 200 days away, and whether or not Chevy will return yet again to pace the track beforehand has yet to be determined.  Who do you think should build the next official pace car and do you think it will break the speed record held by the 2013 ZL1 Corvette?

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