Return of an old flame

Posted by Iannucci | 3/02/2007 | 1 comments »
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The upcoming season is being heralded as the dawning of the E100 era, but it turns out this is actually a misnomer. Trackside Online has reported in their latest podcast that the Ethanol fuel that will be used to power the 2007 IndyCar series is actually closer to E98. It seems you can’t actually have 100% ethanol because some poor sod might try to drink the stuff, which would require some sort of oversight by the ATF or some such governmental entity.

So what is required to avoid this legal madness is a “denaturing agent” to serve as the other 2%. Despite sounding a lot like a really expensive adult beverage, the denaturing agent in this case is gold old gasoline. This means that for this first time since the 1960s, any fire that occurs will be visible due to a slight orange tint. No more pit crew members rolling around on the ground looking like they have been attacked by a poltergeist.

This also means at some point in the near future we’re likely going to gasp in horror at a spectacular looking explosion.


  1. pressdog // March 02, 2007 2:56 PM  

    Oh yeah, ethanol is the same, chemically, as the alcohol in beer, wine, etc. Theoretically, you could drink 100% pure ethanol (although the stuff used for beverages is more finely filtered). Here in Iowa, some guy actually drank E100 at one of the plants. Only problem there is it sends your blood alcohol content from zero to about .035 in maybe a minute, which could kill ya dead. The guy rank an ounce or so of pure ethanol and woke up in the hospital. True story. BUT, if it was E100, the pit crews could take about a cup of it and have a hell of a punch party. HENCE the need to make it unconsumable by humans.