(Posted Tue. Oct 7th, 2014)
Perfect fall weather provided a grand backdrop for the final American Ethanol paint-out on Austin Dillon’s No. 3 Chevy Sunday at Kansas Speedway this weekend. More than 700 ethanol supporters attended the event and got one last opportunity this season to see Dillon don the American Ethanol fire suit and put on a spectacular show, surviving multiple wrecks and mayhem to bring home an eighth-place finish.
Kansas Corn Growers Association and Nebraska Corn Growers Association joined Growth Energy in arranging a full schedule of activities leading up to the race, including a chance to hear from Dillon and NASCAR chief Operating Officer Brent Dewar. A lucky group of mechanics also went behind the scenes to meet with a technical expert from Richard Childress Racing to hear about the evolution of E15 from a new fuel in the sport to it becoming a heavily tested mainstay in racing.
This is the fourth year of the American Ethanol partnership with NASCAR and the relationship is providing ethanol awareness on a previously unseen scale. Millions of NASCAR fans are more knowledgeable about ethanol and more supportive of the renewable domestic fuel, according to third-party research done annually by NASCAR.
The bright green fuel port circle on every car competing in NASCAR three racing series and the green American Ethanol starter flag have provided great brand exposure, but having the visibility and support of an emerging NASCAR star like Dillon brings the program into even sharper focus. From his days as a NASCAR Nationwide Series champion to now, Dillon has been a tireless advocate for more access to biofuels for all consumers.
Dillon also takes great pride in how his sport is leading the way in green innovations, including the switch to Sunoco Green E15 as the fuel choice for all three national series NASCAR races. In a recent interview Dillon praised NASCAR’s choice to switch to E15 four seasons ago, by saying, “It shows what our sport is doing to work toward a green environment and having a green fuel in the cars, it’s nice we've been able to run it over 6 million miles on the race track."
The move to American Ethanol has cut harmful emissions at track by 20 percent and has also given driver and an additional 12-15 horsepower, a boon in a sport where speed is preeminent.
Even in the heat of a rookie of the year battle, it speaks volumes about Dillon’s commitment to advocate for higher blends of ethanol – the cleaner burning solution that reduces our dependence on foreign oil, revitalizes our rural economy and reduces greenhouse gas emissions. No wonder more than 700 farmers and ethanol producers came out to Kansas Speedway this weekend to cheer on one of the greatest advocates for ethanol as he raced his way to a top-10 finish!