MOORESVILLE, N.C. (May 18)
Championship team owner Victor Cagnazzi has been selected as one of just 69 individuals in the world to receive a new COPO Chevrolet Camaro, courtesy of Berger Chevrolet. Cagnazzi plans to call on 26-time national event winner Dave Connolly to drive the purpose-built drag racer, which will compete in the NHRA's Stock and Super Stock classes.
First introduced in 1969, the Central Office Production Order (COPO) Camaro was designed to satisfy the needs of Chevrolet dealers looking for high-performance models of the standard Camaro. The 2012 incarnation of the iconic car will be the quickest Camaro ever produced and is solely intended for the drag strip.
"There is no car that offers a stronger racing heritage and generates more emotion among enthusiasts than the original 1969 COPO Camaro," Cagnazzi said. "I feel blessed to be one of the lucky few to receive a new 2012 COPO. This represents a critical expansion of our team’s performance-driven, championship-focused motorsports footprint."
The COPO Camaro will immediately be tested in competition against the Ford Mustang Cobra Jet and the Dodge Challenger Drag Pak. Cagnazzi and business partner Gaston Kearby expect to receive their car in the summer with plans to begin testing as soon as it's race-ready.
"Dave is as anxious as we are," Cagnazzi said. "He's a proven winner and we expect he'll be a contender from the onset. Dave's that rare driver who has consistently won in every NHRA class in which he’s competed. We couldn't think of anyone else we'd want to put behind the wheel."
In 1969, the lightning-fast COPO Camaros were extremely competitive on the drag strip, thanks in large part to the efforts of Berger Chevrolet, the legendary Grand Rapids, Michigan-based dealer long known by racing enthusiasts for its high-performance heritage.
With the COPO’s pending return, Berger Chevrolet officials are excited about the opportunity to feature the new racecar as a key component in further promoting its GM online parts division.
"We are eagerly anticipating the return of the COPO this summer," President Matt Berger said. "Honestly, we could not imagine a better partner to promote this legendary vehicle and our online parts division -- GMPartsNow.com -- than Cagnazzi Racing, a two-time NHRA championship organization, and a proven performer like Dave Connolly."