F1 Stars and E85 Set to Make 2012 a Classic Indy 500

This year’s Indy 500 is shaping up to be a good one, with F1 contenders Rubens Barichello and Jean Alesi adding some international talent to a field of drivers that (finally!) feels like something out of the long-lost golden days of CART.

In addition to being one of the first “good” 500s in recent memory, this year’s 500 will mark the first Indy running of the Dallara DW12 chassis and the first time that all the cars will run on commercially available E85.

Brent Schutte, Market Strategist for Harris Private Bank, wrote about the promising future of (sustainable fuel) vehicles to cut costs for both American families and racing teams.

Indy car drivers have embraced versions of alternative fuels and this season will mark the first year that cars will be burning E85 (ethanol) fuel. The sights and sounds of race cars burning fuel to speed across the track in America’s Heartland got us thinking about another American story, namely the increased natural gas and crude oil production that is occurring in many parts of the U.S.

E85 and E15 are having great success in American racing series lately, and mean lower carbon emissions for the cars themselves. The hope, of course, is that race fans and gear-heads will begin to embrace ethanol-based fuels and act as alt-fuel evangelists, convincing their less gear-head-y friends that E15/E85 can be a good thing at their local pump.

With all the flex-fuel GM vehicles running around out there, you can bet Team Chevy will be pushing that angle pretty hard as well!

Head over to Indy 500 Race Control during tomorrow’s event for live timing, track position maps, and exclusive commentary … and check in here for my (maybe angry, maybe happy) rants if one of my guys wins and/or gets screwed out of victory by some BS yellow-flag nonsense.

Source: Bleacher Report.

Jo Borrás

I've been in the auto industry 1997, and write for a number of blogs in the IM network. You can also find me on Twitter, at my Volvo fansite, out on two wheels, or chasing my kids around Oak Park, IL.