(1974 Hurst/Olds Indianapolis Pace Car)

(Click on any of the documents for a larger version)

Two documented actual Pace Cars exist today. The roof was removed, as a open top car was required by the track, and a roll bar was installed. The roll bar was made of high-strength chrome molly steel and tied directly into the cars frame, 'supposedly', more below. This then was covered by the padded roof band that was replicated in the vinyl top of the pace car replicas available to the public. A fiberglass and plexiglass removable roof cover was made for the car in the event of bad weather, a 2 peice design with one for the front half as in a targa type peice and the back window peice.

Increased suspension modifications were made including heavy-duty shocks, thicker sway bars, stiffer springs and increased braking, the latter improved by parts from the Delta 88. The engine was replaced by a special built 455 done to 1970 W-30 specs, with other modifications including high-capacity oil pan and oil pump, forged pistons and special connec rods. The engine was capable of speeds topping 130 mph and quarter mile speeds less than 14 seconds.

(Pace Car #1)

Mr Bush photos above courtesy of the H/OCA

Several other pictures of Rooster's pace car

Rooster Bush's Pace Car at a North Carolina Olds show in 2005

Photo courtesy of Bob Kassel from NC.

Rooster Bush, who owned an Oldsmobile, Pontiac, GMC dealership in North Carolina was able to purchase one of the actual Indianapolis pace cars, see pictures above. Per the February 1989 issue of Thunder & Lightning, According to Mr Bush, "I acquired the vehicle after much correspondence with Oldsmobile. This car is the original pace car. It also holds the record for the Pikes Peak hill climb which was shortly after the Indy 500 race. The car is equipped with a 500 HP experimental engine and I can never sell the car per my purchase agreement with Oldsmobile.

Mr Bush's car does not contain a V.I.N. number so it probably can never be titled and was not meant for public sale. The engine is painted black with a 1971 W-30 aluminum intake manifold and chrome dual snorkel air cleaner.

Mr Bush's removable hard top is a 1 peice unit where as pace car number 2, below, was a two peice unit. The 2 peice unit has a seperate peice forward of the roll bar and a seperate peice behind the roll bar. Mr Bush's car has both peices connected with a black padded area that sits on top of the existing roll bar. Also notice in the middle set of pictures above, pace car number 1 has 'grab bars' in the rear seat area that pace car number 2 does not.

(Pace Car #2)

Above photos courtesy of H/OCA Member Jon Smith taken at the auction

Tranny Tag


Roll Bar area


396021 F block, not Fa

Front roof peice

Rear roof peice

Inside rear roof peice

Another Pace Car recently came up for sale at RM Auctions in Boca Raton Florida. This car was owned by Jerry Remlinger, a former owner of an Oldsmobile dealership in Massilion, OH. He also bought this car directly from Oldsmobile in 1975 as this car also did not contain a VIN #.

The car has many features as Mr. Bush's car including chrome valve covers, chrome Altenator bracket, Chrome Power Steering pump & bracket, chrome air cleaner lid & pulleys and a aluminum W-30 intake manifold. The car also has a unique, 'expirimental'? transmission, with the tag reading - "O X" with "74 - O X - 1001". The car also has 'EX X' with '009' below stamped into the block where the VIN would normally be and has marine heads and a 1973 marine application carb.

The cars lettering and stripes are all hand painted on the car and it also has a removable fiberglass top which attaches with mounted and spring loaded pins. This car was used as a USAC promotional vehicle in 1974 & 1975, Judy Badgely from the H/OCA has spoken with Donald Davidson, who was the USAC Statistician and Historian and he remembers driving this car around the USAC circuit in the 74-75 season and remembers the top with the spring loaded pins. After the race, the pace car lettering was removed from both cars when they were used for further USAC duties.

Joe Spagnoli of Illinois has bought the car and upon cleaning and inspection of the car it was discovered that the roll bar does not appear to be tied into the frame. It is suspected that this is pace car number #2 as the backup to pace car #1. Interestingly this car had 'Firestone Steel Radial 500' tires on the car at Indy and the other pace car had'Goodyear GT Radial' tires. It was also discovered that the removable tops also had large portions that were made out of wood and then portions covered in fiberglas and padding.

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