Digitas Sets Pace

Get out your crayons. No, make that your computers. General Motors is partnering with Nascar.com, America Online and Electronic Art for a Pontiac Grand Prix design contest to promote the vehicle’s role as the official pace car of the 2003 Daytona 500.

The promotion is being handled by Digitas in Boston.

Pontiac is asking Nascar fans to submit proposals for the pace car’s paint scheme through an online system, and then to vote for their favorite. Contestants will be able to electronically design a complete pace-car paint scheme on a three-dimensional model of the vehicle.

The two-phase promotion begins with race fans submitting their design proposals online at www.pontiac racing.com. After Pontiac pares the list to five finalists, the contending designs will be posted on the Web site. Fans will get to vote for their favorite design Oct. 25 through Nov. 26.

Each of the finalists will win a trip to next year’s Daytona 500. The winning design will be unveiled in a special ceremony just before the race on Feb. 16.

The winner of the design contest will receive a special parade lap around the Daytona International Speedway track in the official Pontiac Grand Prix Daytona 500 pace car driven by actor Vin Diesel.