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NASCAR puts power behind electric car initiative

DAYTONA BEACH — NASCAR President Mike Helton now won’t have to go far to find an electric-vehicle charging station for his new 2013 Ford C-Max Energi car.

Thanks to a Cleveland, Ohio-based company called Eaton, eight newly installed electric-vehicle charging stations were unveiled Monday in the parking lot of the International Motorsports Center, the office tower where both NASCAR and International Speedway Corp. are based, across the street from Daytona International Speedway.

The charging stations — made to accommodate a wide range of electric vehicle makes and models including those made by Ford, Chevrolet and Toyota — will be available at no cost for employees and guests of NASCAR and ISC.

Eaton was introduced at a Monday morning press conference as the “Official Electric Vehicle Charging Solution Provider of NASCAR.” The company will also be installing six electric vehicle charging stations each at NASCAR offices in both Concord and Charlotte, N.C.

The signing of Eaton as an official partner is the latest development in the stock car racing sanctioning body’s ongoing NASCAR Green initiative to encourage both fans, race teams and employees to engage in environmentally friendly practices. The event was attended by about 30 people, including a number of NASCAR and ISC employees.

While acknowledging that the installation of the electric vehicle charging stations at NASCAR headquarters is “a bit symbolic,” Helton said “this is an option that will grow” in a green movement that “I prefer to see NASCAR taking the lead.”

“I think the future holds multiple options,” in terms of how vehicles are powered, he said.
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