Isobutanol, a biofuel with energy density similar to gasoline, has hit a milestone with its first win in the American LeMans Series.
Dyson Racing has been running the alt fuel in its Castrol Mazda Lola LMP2 coupe this year, and drivers Chris Dyson and Guy Smith took first at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Challenge last weekend. They finished half a second ahead of Patron Highcroft Racing to win in grand style, recording the fastest lap and setting a race record.
“We had a good car all weekend,” Dyson said. “It stopped well, put the power down in key areas, and it was extremely consistent as the fuel burned off.”
Ah, the fuel.
The team is running isobutanol, specifically isobutanol blended with ethanol to create a biofuel with energy density similar to gasoline. The introduction of the isobutanol blend (20 percent isobutanol, 80 percent ethanol) brings to five the number of alt-fuels running in the American Le Mans Series, joining E10 ethanol, E85 cellulosic ethanol, diesel and gas-electric hybrids.
The fuel is being developed by BP (yes, that BP) under a partnership with Dyson and MazdaSpeed. The Dyson Lola is powered by a Mazda MZR-R 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that puts down 500 horsepower and more than 400 pound feet of torque.
Photo: Dyson Racing
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