Car of the Month
Webmaster's note: When I attended the All- Chevy Pace Car Reunion in Indianapolis last August, I had the chance to get some pictures of some magnificent pace cars. Little did I know that the 1967 Camaro on display between the tents (seen above) was actually a dealer replica owned by Michael Lakin!
Michael Lakin still remembers the first time he saw the 1967 Camaro Pace Car. He was just six years old when his uncle, who owned a Chevrolet dealership in Indianapolis, came by with a brand new Camaro pace car, complete with yellow flags. It was then that Michael knew he would one day own a Camaro... any Camaro.
It wasn't until 1999, however, that Michael was able to make his dream a reality. He started his search, dreaming of owning a '67 pace car but expected that it would be too hard to find or too expensive. A buddy found an ad on the internet with a California address. The ad was three months old but out of curiosity, Michael dropped the owner an e-mail. As it turned out, the owner had recently moved to California to Indianapolis and was not able to take the car with him. The car was actually still in Indianapolis, just a few miles up the road where Michael lived! "I took this as a sign that all was meant to be and bought the car," says Michael.
Michael is the fifth owner of this car. The original owner had the car for about 10-12 years and for some reason repainted it blue at some point. It was restored to its original appearance by the dealership under the second owner's care. The fourth owner was a staff member at Indianapolis Motor Speedway and received a set of original checkered flags when the old speedway museum was torn down.
Although the car was never actually used at the speedway (as far as Michael can tell), the flags add an extra sense of authenticity to the car. It has a "C-1" cowl tag and all the mandatory pace car options plus tinted windshield, console/gauges, power top, tilt wood wheel, and AM/FM pushbutton radio. The car has the L35 325HP 396c.i. V-8 backed by a THM400 3-speed automatic transmission. "I have rebuilt the front suspension with PST polygraphite, dumped the points/condenser for a Pertronix, replaced the carpet, and done a lot of cleaning/detailing so far," says Michael. The car was pictured in the January 2001 issue of Super Chevy magazine and is also featured in new book by Peter Sessler, Camaro 1967-2001: Photo Archive. Congratulations to Michael on his great car, and for being selected as Car of the Month!
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