Brazil Revs Up Sugarcane Ethanol Campaign at Indy 500

Cindy Zimmerman

Indy car drivers from several countries extolled the virtues of sugarcane ethanol from Brazil in ads that aired during the telecast of the 2010 Indianapolis 500 on Sunday.

The parade of Indy spokesdrivers in two 30-second Brazilian Sugarcane Industry Association (UNICA) television ads that debuted on Sunday include Ryan Hunter-Reay, who briefly served as spokesman for the U.S. ethanol industry and drove the #17 Team Ethanol car to victory for the first time in 2008. Takuma Sato of Japan, Davey Hamilton of the U.S., E.J. Viso of Venezuela, join Brazilians Ana Beatriz, Vitor Meira and three-time Indy 500 winner Helio Castroneves in proudly proclaiming “I compete with sugarcane ethanol.” Castroneves, who was the 2007 Dancing with the Stars winner, even croons a sweet tune to sugarcane ethanol. “Fast and Sweet and Clean and Lovely, the fuel from sugarcane goes racing,” he sings to the tune of “The Girl from Ipenema,” then says he can dance but he can’t sing. The winner of Sunday’s race, Dario Franchitti of Scotland, was not featured in the spots.

“For the first time ever, we are taking our message about sugarcane ethanol to national network television during one of the most prestigious sporting events in the world,” said Joel Velasco, UNICA’s Chief Representative in North America. “These commercials seek to educate American consumers about sugarcane ethanol and how it can benefit their pockets, the environment and the market, by promoting competition on and off the track.”

The ads are well done and definitely worth watching – see them here on UNICA’s website.

Ethanol, Indy Racing, International