The Donald Ditches Indy 500

Racing legend A.J. Foyt to replace Trump as pace car driver

Donald Trump has received your message, race fans: "you're fired."

The Donald's latest celebrity apprenticeship—as honorary pace car driver at the Indianapolis 500 centennial later this month—ran afoul of the sport's faithful, a Democratic state representative and a group of Baptist ministers after the real estate mogul caused a national stir demanding President Obama produce a birth certificate to prove his citizenship.

One fan, Michael Wallack, started a Facebook page—We Don't Want Donald Trip to Drive the Indy 500 Pace Car—on April 8. Today the page has more than 18,000 fans.

"He has no relationship to the track, to the race, to racing to Indianapolis," Wallack told ESPN. "Then when he started going off on the birther stuff, that prompted me to do more and that's when I started the page."

Today the follicularly-challenged billionaire appeared to cede to mounting pressure by declining the invitation. “I very much appreciate the honor, but time and business constraints make my appearance there, especially with the necessary practice sessions, impossible to fulfill,” he told race organizers in a statement.

Jeff Belskus, the track's president, accepted Donald's dumping, but stood up for him. "Donald Trump has been very enthusiastic about the '500' from the beginning of our conversations, and I have appreciated the interaction we have had with him and his staff."

Previous honorary race car drivers have included actors Josh Duhamel, Patrick Dempsey, and Morgan Freeman, as well as retired Gen. Colin Powell and Tour de France champ Lance Armstrong.

Indy 500 legend A.J. Foyt has been named to drive the pace car in Trump's stead. No word yet on whether he's been asked to produce proof of birth.


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