Lewis Hamilton, Michael Schumacher, Nigel Mansell and Ayrton Senna all developed their finely honed racing skills at an early age through karting, but not the type of karts being developed today.

Oh no, the karts of the future race on hydrogen and deliver zero-emission speed, even having their own Formula Zero Championship for the racy little mean-machines.

Squeezing speed from hydrogen fuel cell-powered karts, the Formula Zero racing class is the perfect platform for researching and marketing the advanced propulsion technology of now and next.

A clean, green example of future motoring and racing, a successful world record speed attempt was made in Rotterdam in mid-September. Formula Zero driver Bo Ridder broke the 1/8 mile international speed record for fuel cell vehicles, setting a new record at 11.591 seconds and reaching a speed of 75mph.

The previous record, a benchmark also recorded in Rotterdam in 2006, had been set by Formula Zero at 11.869 seconds and propelled by Linde’s zero CO2 emissions hydrogen.

Formula Zero B.V. is currently preparing the 2008 Championship which will see university teams from around the world compete to develop and succeed with their own fuel cell karts.

Sponsors of Formula Zero include industrial gas giant Linde and Hydrogenics.

Meanwhile, the presence of the Forze Formula Zero Championship team at a racing event in Germany attracted attention from the press and public alike. As one of the world’s first hydrogen racing cars, the Forze kart proved a real eye-catcher as even former Formula One driver Christian Albers took the opportunity to take a seat in the clean, green racing machine.