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Team Punto, the first biodiesel-powered car in an Australian tarmac rally, was the first diesel and third two-wheel drive car in the Showroom competition to finish at Targa Tasmania on the weekend.
 
Driving 2,200 kilometres, including 450 kilometres of racing over 39 stages in six days, the 1.9L turbo diesel Fiat Punto Sport Abarth, used only 180 litres of the BioMax B20 biodiesel.
 
Team driver Phil Buggee said he was ecstatic with the performance of biodiesel in his Fiat Punto Sport Abarth.
 
“To be the first diesel home, third in the two-wheel drive and ninth overall in the Showroom competition, against the petrol four-wheel drive and factory two wheel drive cars, shows that the environmentally friendly biodiesel has a place in motorsports,” Mr Buggee said.
 
“Fiat has a worldwide reputation of producing some of the world’s most efficient diesel engines, and the Punto Sport Abarth’s performance was outstanding with BioMax B20, while emitting 15 per cent less CO2 emissions and far less air particulates.
 
“We aimed to complete Targa Tasmania using less than 200 litres of fuel, which exceeds Targa Tasmania, Octagon and Events Tasmania’s environmental initiatives of ‘reduction’ and ‘offsetting’ carbon emissions, due in 2011,” he said.
 
As part of these initiatives competitors could make a voluntary donation to Greening Australia to offset their carbon emissions of participating in this event.
 
Smorgon Fuels’ BioMax biodiesel is a renewable fuel predominantly made from used cooking oil, along with animal fats (tallow) and other oilseeds.
 
“While competing in one of the toughest tarmac rallies in the world, in one of the most pristine environments in the world, it’s reassuring that we’ll be reducing our CO2 and air pollutant emissions with biodiesel,” he said.
 
BioMax B20 is a blend of 20 per cent biodiesel mixed with mineral diesel that reduces CO2 emissions by 15 per cent. It also exceeds the Australian Diesel and Biodiesel Fuel Standard.
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