Sunoco has entered into a multi-year partnership to be the official fuel retailer and convenience store of the Indy Racing League's IZOD IndyCar Series and Firestone Indy Lights. Through its ethanol manufacturing facility in Fulton, N.Y., Sunoco will supply 100 percent fuel-grade ethanol to the IZOD IndyCar Series beginning in 2011 in partnership with UNICA (the Brazilian Sugarcane Industry Association).
The partnership with Sunoco and UNICA will promote ethanol as an alternative fuel of the future in the United States. Currently, ethanol is blended in Sunoco gasoline at its 4,700 retail outlets and available at E85 pumps at selected locations.
“What is attractive to us about motorsports is it gives us an opportunity to showcase the atrributes of our retail brand –the commitment to quality, performance and competition," said Robert W. Owens, Sunoco's senior vice president of marketing. "When I look at the top competition in motorsports, how could you align yourself better than with the Indy Racing League? As both a retailer and one of the largest seller of racing fuel in the world, we are also fans. It gives us the opportunity to showcase our brands and extend it into biofuels. We're committed to ethanol and this alignment with the Indy Racing League is just a perfect fit for us at the perfect time."
“That the Indy Racing League has a new energy today is an understatement," CEO Randy Bernard said. "To have Sunoco with us is where IndyCar needs to go, and it's very exciting today to announce this deal. We feel our key brand attributes of innovation, technology and green align well with Sunoco and will provide a great retail platform to jointly promote the sport. We're looking forward to working with Sunoco on creating in-store and at-pump activation initiatives to raise awareness of the IZOD Indy Car Series.”
UNICA, one of the more than 70 sectors associated with Apex-Brasil – Brazil's official trade agency -- is the largest organization in Brazil representing sugar, ethanol and bioelectricity producers. UNICA members account for more than 50 percent of all ethanol produced in Brazil and 60 percent of overall sugar production. Brazil is the largest exporter of ethanol in the world.
“We look forward to working with Sunoco to promote the use of ethanol in the U.S.,” said Joel Velasco, chief representative for UNICA in North America. “This is a great opportunity to partner at their retail locations on the IZOD IndyCar Series circuit to get the word out to consumers about the many benefits of ethanol fuel.”