Letter to CAMS regarding banning the use of AGAS in Motor Sport

Friday, 4 May 2001

Dear Sir,

I am the President of a CAMS affiliated club the Morris Modified Register.
My attention has recently been drawn to the issue of a possible future ban of the use of Avgas in motor racing by a colleague who works for the VACC.
I am also an active member of the MGCC and MG Racing Register and race an MGB which has a historic log book.

I remember reading about this topic in a CAMS bulletin some time ago and personally thinking that the idea of banning 100 octane Avgas was rather ridiculous, but hadn't heard anything about it since.

I have spoken to many people involved in motor racing and especially historic racing and they all agreed with me that there were a number of areas for concern and expect that CAMS would lobby hard, in the best interests of it's members, not to allow the banning of Avgas to occur.

Reasons why Avgas should not be banned:

- High comp performance engines run more efficiently on high grade high octane fuel.

- Race engines (especially those in historic cars) run high comp and have been built to run on high octane leaded fuel.

- Damage to valve/seats will occur if unleaded fuel is used in these engines.

- Major expenses will be incurred to the (amateur) motor racing community to convert engines to run on unleaded fuel.

- Motor racing is a sport and the amount of air pollution produced by racing would be minuscule, especially if compared with the amount produced by the aviation industry.

- Politicians have been mislead in the past about the ecological benefits of unleaded fuel and it is now seen as a mistake that  Australia followed down the unleaded path of the USA.

                            - Dr David Warren (fuel scientist and inveentor of "black box" flight recorder) has written several articles and
                              given many lectures on the subject of leaded v unleaded and has stated that lead is the less harmful of
                              the two poisons as two known carcinogens (toluene and benzine) are used as anti knock agents in
                              unleaded fuel.
                            - Therefore it is much worse for our healtth and the environment (even against current environmental law)
                              to run vehicles that were designed to run on leaded fuel on unleaded, as these vehicles do not have the
                              catalytic converters to clean-up the emissions.
                            - It is now seen as a myth that young schoool children's brain growth or intelligence was affected by lead
                              used in fuel..........This argument originated from the environmentalists and was used as a scare tactic
                              by Rose Kelly and the Keating Government to enable them to justify an unfair higher tax on "Super"
                              (now labelled leaded) fuel and the fuel companies went along for the ride.

I would like to add that car clubs and the motor racing community who support CAMS would naturally expect that CAMS would support their interests in matters like this. CAMS should be our voice to the Government.

Could you please send me some up to date information and an indication of CAMS policy towards this idea to ban Avgas on our race tracks.

Yours sincerely,

Richard Milligan
Morris Modified Register.

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