What the advertising literature failed to mention however, was that with the addition of tuned headers and straight through pipes horsepower jumped dramatically. Running on pure racing fuel through open exhausts, and tuned to the razor's edge, the L88 could realize its true potential-nearly 600 horsepower!
Like nearly all of the L88s built in 1967, Dave's coupe saw more than its fair share of action on the race track. A man named David Zeigler bought it new in Washington D.C. from Curtis Chevrolet on October 13, 1967. He occasionally drove it on the street but mostly used it for drag racing.
Nicknamed: "The Flying Dutchman,"
Zeigler's Corvette was well known at numerous tracks in West Virginia and Pennsylvania, where it consistently turned low 11-second quarter miles in the 125 mph range.
Late in 1968 Zeigler sold the L88 to a Pittsburgh resident and it remained in the Pittsburgh area until Walters bought it in 1979. At the time Dave acquired it the car had traveled a total of only 4,766 miles, but they were hard miles indeed. The original interior was nearly perfect, but everything else needed restoration.
With help from numerous friends, Dave completed the car's restoration in early 1992. In deference to its early history he decided to return it to its initial drag race configuration rather than its stock appearance. Period modifications include Stahl headers, a Hurst shifter, and American Racing mag wheels.
In consideration of its rarity and value, The Flying Dutchman is very well cared for these days, but that doesn't mean climate controlled storage and a luxurious car trailer. Dave exercises his awesome L88 regularly, and even drove it from Miami to Bloomington, Illinois, in June 1992 for display in the Special Collection. That adventure entailed driving a total of 1,365 miles!
Dave also occasionally nostalgia drag races the old warrior, turning a personal best of 11.856 seconds at 120.64 mph at Moroso Motorsports Park.
Dave has spoken with first owner Zeigler about his experiences with the Corvette on several occasions and can confirm from first hand experience that the passage of time and a comprehensive restoration have done little to change the L88's personality. Through it all, the car is still recalcitrant in traffic, unruly on the highway, and an absolute ferocious beast on the dragstrip.