Mercury Racing has been awarded the 2011 Environmental Award for Economic Feasibility and Sustainability by the Union International Motonautique (UIM), the world governing body for all power boating activities.
The award recognises outstanding environmental leaders, whether individuals or organisations, which have shown leadership in safeguarding water and the environment through all types of power boating activities.
Mercury Racing was selected for its development and production of low-emissions engines for the greening of outboard powerboat racing worldwide.
“Mercury customers, myself included, want to boat on clean water and in a healthy environment. Mercury Racing showcases our environmentally responsible technologies through powerboat racing and performance boating worldwide,” said Mercury Racing President, Fred Kiekhaefer.
Mercury Racing’s influence in the greening of outboard powerboat racing began in 1997. In the legendary 24 Hours of Rouen endurance race in France, two stock 200hp Mercury OptiMax outboard-powered tunnel boats finished a respectable 4th and 5th overall.
Mercury Racing again made history at the 2000 Rouen 24 Hour event when low-emission OptiMax-powered boats took first, second and fourth place overall, beating larger-displacement traditional race engines of all competitors. This marked the first time a low-emissions engine had won the event since its 1964 inception. Today, the OptiMax 200XS SST race outboard dominates Class 2 competition in Rouen.
The low-emissions OptiMax 200XS SST also powered Chris Fairchild to the 2011 UIM SST 120 World Championship last year in Michigan, USA.
Global demand for low-emissions race engines continues to grow as event promoters realise the need for creating affordable classes featuring clean, environmentally responsible engines. The OptiMax 200XS SST is the official power of the UIM F1H2O Nations Cup Series. The series features drivers competing in identical boats using identical engines and props.
Mercury Racing has made an impact in the greening of UIM Class 3C offshore racing as well. The low-emissions OptiMax 200XS ROS (Race offshore) has replaced the carburetted 2.0 litre Mercury XR2 race outboard as the power of choice for this exciting outboard offshore racing class.
Mercury’s efforts in sustaining the environment extend to entry-level racing as well. Mercury Racing’s 60hp EFI FormulaRace outboard is featured in the UIM F-4S outboard racing series. Safety and environment sustainability are the main criteria for the series featuring strong, composite boats with reinforced cockpits and environmentally friendly engines. The international series features low-emissions four-stroke competition in Sweden, Germany, Poland, Latvia, Norway, Hungary, France, the Netherlands, China and other UIM nations, with approximately 60 boats registered worldwide.