NASCAR Hugs the Forbidden Fruit
While using leaded gas for NASCAR events may be a symbolic issue only given the volumes consumed, claiming leaded gas is a must for anything these days is mind boggling. NASCAR racers indeed still run on leaded gas...this is something even the "Stan" countries of central Europe have been able to wean themselves from ...which says a lot about priorities. According to legend, the Federal "Revenuers" once chased custom built moonshine smuggling cars across the rural south, leading to the culture that invented the NASCAR race ritual. Apparently the USEPA has subsumed the 'revenuer' role, chasing a chimera of voluntary risk reduction with NASCAR drivers.From the Forbes magazine article of July 10, 2005 ..."I'd say the majority of the people in here are the farthest thing from environmentalists, from my outside-looking-in perspective," the Nascar driver Ryan Newman said. Asked if he was a tree hugger, Newman said, "I just touch the bark once in a while."..."The open-wheel Indy-style racecars switched to methanol in the 1960's, and the Indy Racing League is planning to move to ethanol, a cleaner fuel, completing the transition by 2007"..."When the E.P.A. began working with Nascar in 2000 toward a voluntary solution, there was a three- to five-year plan to make the changeover. It has been five years since those discussions".
Maybe one day there will be a design breakthrough by a NASCAR team that outruns EPA's expectations. If only fuel cells could roar. Alcohol certainly can.