Iogen refuels GAM racecar at Thunderhill

By Anna Austin | January 03, 2009
Web exclusive posted Dec. 8, 2008 at 10:57 a.m. CST

For the second consecutive year, Canada-based Iogen Corp. was the only company to supply cellulosic ethanol to the National Auto Sport Association's 25 Hours of Thunderhill, the longest road race in the world. The race was held at Thunderhill Raceway Park in Willows, Calif., on Dec. 6-7.

Iogen Executive Vice President Jeff Passmore said last year the company supplied Green Alternative Motorsports with 800 gallons of cellulosic ethanol to fuel two racecars. This year, Iogen supplied 300 gallons to fuel one GAM racecar driven by Steve Zadig, who drove one of the two cars in last year's race.

Passmore said he believed the reason GAM only chose to race one car this year instead of two was because of the roughness of last year's track.

In 2007, there were 70 cars entered in the Thunderhill race. "One of ours finished second, and the other had the fastest lap time," Passmore said. "Steve was very happy with the performance of the fuel."

The relationship between GAM and Iogen was formed before last year's race when Zadig became anxious to switch from gasoline to E85, and soon after learned about cellulosic E85, according to Passmore. "He searched around last year, and found we were the only company that could supply it. This year, we were still the only company," Passmore added.

Passmore said Iogen was happy to help GAM participate in the race. "But also, considering all of the announcements out there of people making cellulosic ethanol, we are one that is actually making it and can supply it, and we are proud of thatwe simply took it out of our fuel inventory, rather than have to specially make this order."

This year the GAM LeMans Prototype (LMP3) car #87 finished fourth in a field of 68.

In September, Iogen announced it had shipped the first 100,000 liters (26,417 gallons) of an initial 180,000 liter (47,550 gallons) cellulosic ethanol order made by business partner Royal Dutch Shell PLC. "This is going to be for some upcoming fuel applications that Shell and Iogen will be announcing in the new year," Passmore said.

In February 2008, Ethanol Producer Magazine featured GAM's first run with Iogen E85 in last year's Thunderhill race. Click here to read "Quick Off the Straw."