What is an Indy 500 Pace car and what happened in 1972?
Make : Oldsmobile
Model : H/O Indy “500” Pace Car
Year : 1972
Owner : Mr. Eid Malas
Country : Lebanon
Indy 500 Pace car is what we call today “safety car” in Formula one races.
The concept was initiated by Fisher himself in 1911 where the Indy 500 Pace car was the lead car that headed the race cars and gave them the rolling race start.
In 1971, The Indy Pace car crashed into the journalists’ booth causing several injuries. This has halted the automobile manufactures from providing the 1972 Indy Pace Car, Only Hurst Performance stepped up the to the challenge and volunteered to sponsor the 1972 Pace car. Oldsmobile provided the Cutlass Supreme coupe and convertible chassis and so the beast was born.
The 1972 edition of the Hurst/Olds had some of the lowest production numbers of any Indy Pace Vehicle produced with a total of 629 made; 130 Convertibles, 220 hardtops with sunroof, and 279 hardtop cars. The only color available was Cameo White with reflective 3M stickers gold stripes.
All 1972 H/O Indy Pace Cars had the W-25 Ram Air Hood and gold SS III Rally Wheels with a chrome bolt-on center cap and chrome beauty ring. The tires were Goodyear Polysteel Radials. The standard Hurst/Olds engine was a 455 cubic-inch Rocket V8 rated at 270 net horsepower with an optional upgrade to the W-30 with the L77 455, a blueprinted engine rated at 300 net horsepower.
Both engines were mated with a Turbo Hydra-matic 400 transmission with console-mounted Hurst Dual-Gate shifter. All of the 1972 Hurst/Olds had the black Strato bucket interior with a center console. Special Hurst/Olds Pace Car badging adorned the glove box door and all 1972 Hurst/Olds’ were identified with a W-45 Code on the cowl tag.