In 2016, 5 teams of 3 drivers crawled into their Tesla's for a two-day monster race. Their goal: to improve the existing world record for battery electric driving in 48 hours. It was a great challenge that dit not keep them on a ‘track’ but brought them all over Europe - and for the world to see, as they had a tracking application that they shared online. Two teams actually beat the existing record, but  that was not the craziest thing. Arjan de Putter of e-xpeditie.nl found that after driving 48 hours, the participants wanted to do it AGAIN.

Enter Bastiaan du Pré of Infram.nl and waterstofwerkt.nl. The company had just got a Hyundai ix35 FCEV and Arjan asked if he could take it for a test drive… Well, only if Bastiaan could join for the adventure. After 5 hours test driving the concept for the 24 hour Hydrogen Challenge was born (not a race, a challenge). To make it a real competition it was decided have at least two teams. Van der Linden Group in Waddinxveen, supplied our second vehicle. The challenge was on! Three months later, and with the help of the municipality of Deventer, the first Challenge started in Deventer with 6 cars (at the time: 15% of the Dutch vehicle fleet). An unforgettable experience with als some nice results: between the 6 teams we:

  • drove 10.870 kilometers,
  • visited 7 countries, and
  • made 54 refuellings.

We learned a lot about the different stations and their refuelling cards, and also about the vehicles under challenge conditions. This information was shared between enthusiasts.

And, yes, we decided to organise to have a next  challenge 6 months after the first one.

Very soon after the first Challenge we received a phone call from Berlin: the Hydrogen Challenge had been noticed in Germany. H2-Mobility, operator of almost all hydrogen refuelling stations, became sponsor of the 2nd edition. Also Waterstofnet became a sponsor. With 19 participating teams from the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany this Challenge was a truly international event!

This prompted the interest of the municipality of Nijmegen asked us to organize a third edition in September 2018, as part of the Nijmegen Green Capital year. We organized this in a slightly smaller scale for a Dutch audience (15 cars).

En what is next?

Now we are working toward Challenge nr 4, on Thursday the 16th  and Friday the 17th of May 2019.

Also, we have plans for an f-cell Challenge in Stuttgart, Germany in september 2019. And we are dreaming of a world wide event for hydrogen dag 2019 or 2020.

If you want more information, a great idea for a Challenge or would you like to organise an ‘in house’ hydrogen challenge for you own organisation, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.!
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