Ken Block

Ken Block
Ken Block (USA) (37627512754).jpg
Block in South Africa, November 2017
Nationality United States American
Born (1967-11-21) November 21, 1967 (age 53)
Long Beach, California
FIA World Rallycross Championship career
Debut season 2014
Current team Mallan Racing Division
Car number 43
Starts 26
Wins 18
Podiums 2
Best finish 9th in 2017
FIA ERX Supercar Championship
Years active 2014
Former teams Hoonigan Racing Division
Starts 1
Wins 1
Podiums 1
Best finish 15th in 2014
Global RallyCross Championship
Years active 20112015
Former teams Hoonigan Racing Division
Monster World Rally Team
Starts 39
Wins 6
Podiums 12
Best finish 2nd in 2014
Rally America
Years active 20052010, 20122014
Car number 43
Co-driver Italy Alex Gelsomino
Former teams Hoonigan Racing Division
Monster World Rally Team
Starts 60
Wins 16
Podiums 28
Best finish 2nd Overall in 2006, 2008, and 2013
World Rally Championship record
Active years 20072008, 20102014, 2018
Co-driver Italy Alex Gelsomino
Teams M-Sport World Rally Team
Hoonigan Racing Division
Monster World Rally Team
Subaru Rally Team USA
Rallies 24
Championships 0
Rally wins 0
Podiums 0
Stage wins 0
Total points 18
First rally 2007 Rally México
Last rally 2018 Rally Catalunya

Kenneth Block (born November 21, 1967)[1] is a professional rally driver with the Hoonigan Racing Division, formerly known as the Monster World Rally Team. Block is also one of the co-founders of DC Shoes.[2] Over the years, he has also competed in many action sports events including skateboarding, snowboarding, and motocross. Since selling his ownership of DC Shoes, Block has shifted his business focus to Hoonigan Industries, an apparel brand for auto enthusiasts. He is currently the co-owner and "Head Hoonigan In Charge" (HHIC) at the company.[citation needed]

Rallying

2005

In 2005, Block began his National rallying career with the Vermont SportsCar team.[3] Vermont SportsCar prepared a 2005 Subaru WRX STi for Block to compete. His first event of the rallying season was Sno*Drift, where he ended up finishing seventh overall and fifth in the Group N class.[4] During the 2005 season, Block had five top five finishes and placed third overall in the Group A class and fourth overall in the Rally America National Championship.[3] At the end of his first rallying year, Ken Block had won the Rally America Rookie of the Year award.[5]

2006

In 2006, Block along with his DC rally teammate Travis Pastrana signed a new sponsorship deal with Subaru.[3] Through this deal with Subaru, the teammates became known as "Subaru Rally Team USA."[3] With the new rally season, Block also got a brand new Vermont SportsCar prepped 2006 Subaru WRX STi.[3] He competed in the first ever X Games rally event at X Games XII.[3] In the competition, Block ended up finishing third to take the bronze.[3] He went on to compete in the 2006 Rally America National Championship, where he finished second overall.[3]

2007

In 2007, Block competed in the X Games XIII rally event, where he placed second overall and won a silver medal.[5] In the 2007 Rally America National Championship, Block finished third overall.[5] During this season, Block also entered in a few rounds of the World Rally Championship; Rally Mexico and Rally New Zealand.[4] In Rally New Zealand, Block recorded two top-five stage times in the Group N class.[4] At the end of 2007, Block had achieved 19 podiums and 8 overall victories in rally events.[2]

2008

In 2008, Block was provided with a brand new rally prepped 2008 Subaru WRX STi to compete. Block decided to compete in the Rallye Baie-des Chaleurs of the Canadian Rally Championship to gain some experience with his new 2008 rally car and prepare for the World Rally Championships later in the year.[6] Block gained his first Canadian rally win at the event.[6] This was only the second event for the new car.[6] Block and his co-driver were unable to get any championship points at the event due to not having a Canadian competition license.[6] Block competed in the Rally New York USA competition and finished in first place.[7] In the X Games XIV rally competition, Block finished tied for third place with Dave Mirra.[8] This occurrence was due to both competitors having issues with their car. Block, who made it to the semi-finals of the event, had a radiator problem after landing the car awkwardly on a jump. With both bronze place competitors in damaged cars unable to compete, the medals were awarded to both of them.[8]

Block competed in the 2008 Rally America National championship, which concluded on October 17, 2008. In the event, he finished second overall with a strong victory in the last event. In the Lake Superior Performance Rally stage, Block finished over one minute ahead of his next closest competitor and secured the second overall position.[9] Next up for Block this rally season is three World Rally Championship events.[4]

2009

Block appeared in a segment of motoring show Top Gear.[10] Block filmed the hit YouTube video "Gymkhana 2", making the most viral video of 2009, as well as selling more DC shoes with this "informercial"[citation needed].

2010

Block testing Ford Fiesta for the 2010 Rally America season
Participation in 2014 Rally Catalunya

For 2010, Block ended his partnership with Subaru and joined Ford. Also, sponsors BFGoodrich and Motul were replaced by Pirelli and Castrol.

On January 6 2010, Block drove selected rounds of the World Rally Championship for Monster World Rally Team, in which he campaigned a Ford Focus RS WRC 08 run by M-Sport, who also prepare the official Ford WRC cars. Also, he ran his sixth season of the Rally America Championship in an open class Ford Fiesta, as well as his fifth X Games. Block was the first ever American driver to campaign for the World Rally Championship. On February 27, Block won the Rally in the 100 Acre Wood (Rally America) for the 5th consecutive time. This broke the record held by John Buffum.[11] Block is currently being trained by former Ford factory driver Markko Märtin. At the Rally Spain, he won his first 2 points in World Rally Championship.

2011

On March 23, Block and his co-driver Alex Gelsomino were taken to hospital, having rolled their Ford Fiesta RS WRC during the shakedown stage of the 2011 Rally de Portugal in Faro, Portugal.[12] A representative of the Monster World Rally team later stated that both men were fine.[13]

2013

On his first race of 2013 season, Block scored well, entering top-ten in the Mexican rally, thus receiving his first six points for the championship and score a best-ever 7th overall finish.[14][15]

2014

Castrol returned as Block's sponsor. He participated in the WRC located in Catalunya, Spain. He was in 10th place until the last stage where he suffered a tire puncture and lost a significant amount of time. He finished in 12th.

2015

Block continued to compete in the Global RallyCross Championship. He also put more time into managing the Hoonigan company. He announced that he would not put any time into the World Rally Championship, a first since 2009.

2016

Block will be[needs update] competing full-time in the World Rallycross Championship for the 2016 season.[16]

At Hockenheimring, Germany, Block finished third in the Supercar Final and achieved his second podium in the series.[17]

Racing record

Complete Rally America results

(key)

Year Car 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 DC Points
2005 Subaru Impreza WRX STi SNO
5
ORE
7
SUS
3
PIK
4
MAI
3
OJI
Ret
COL
4
LSP
3
4th 65
2006 Subaru Impreza WRX STi SNO
3
ACR
1
ORE
3
SUS
Ret
MAI
11
OJI
Ret
COL
Ret
LSP
1
WIL
3
2nd 90
2007 Subaru Impreza WRX STi SNO
6
ACR
1
ORE
2
OLY
4
SUS
Ret
NEW
3
OJI
2
COL
1
LSP
Ret
3rd 109
2008 Subaru Impreza WRX STi SNO
5
ACR
1
OLY
1
ORE
Ret
SUS
Ret
NEW
Ret
OJI
Ret
COL
5
LSP
1
2nd 86
2009 Subaru Impreza WRX STi SNO
Ret
ACR
1
OLY
Ret
ORE
Ret
SUS
1
NEW
2
OJI
Ret
COL
Ret
LSP
3
4th 80
2010 Ford Fiesta SNO
Ret
ACR
1
OLY
Ret
ORE
Ret
SUS
Ret
NEW
Ret
13th 27
2012 Ford Fiesta ST SNO
ACR
1
ORE
SUS
NEW
OLY
1
4th 44
2013 Ford Fiesta ST SNO
6
ACR
Ret
ORE
2
SUS
1
NEW
1
OJI
1
LSP
Ret
2nd 93
2014 Ford Fiesta ST SNO
ACR
1
ORE
SUS
MTW
NEW
OJI
LSP
12th 22

Complete WRC results

(key)

Year Entrant Car 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 PWRC Points
2008 Subaru Rally Team USA Subaru Impreza WRX STI SWE ARG GRE TUR FIN NZL
13
JPN GBR NC 0

Complete Global Rallycross Championship results

(key)

Year Entrant Car 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 GRC Points
2011 Monster World Rally Team Ford Fiesta IRW1 IRW2 SEA1 SEA2 PIK1 PIK2 LA1
11
LA2
13
23rd 10
2012 Monster World Rally Team Ford Racing Ford Fiesta CHA
15
TEX
8
LA
2
LOU
5
LV
7
LVC
10
5th 58
2013 Hoonigan Racing Division Ford Fiesta ST BRA
9
MUN1
2
MUN2
DSQ
LOU
5
BRI
2
IRW
6
ATL
8
CHA
7
LV
1
3rd 115
2014 Hoonigan Racing Division Ford Fiesta ST BAR
10
AUS
11
DC
7
NY
3
CHA
1
DAY
2
LA1
3
LA2
2
SEA
9
LV
1
2nd 376
2015 Hoonigan Racing Division Ford Fiesta ST FTA
1
DAY1
8
DAY2
2
MCAS
1
DET1
1
DET2
7
DC
3
LA1
11
LA2
9
BAR1
11
BAR1
10
LV
10
7th 345

Complete FIA European Rallycross Championship results

(key)

Year Entrant Car 1 2 3 4 5 ERX Points
2014 Hoonigan Racing Division Ford Fiesta ST GBR NOR
1
BEL GER ITA 15th 16

Complete FIA World Rallycross Championship results

(key)

Year Entrant Car 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 WRX Points
2014 Hoonigan Racing Division Ford Fiesta ST POR GBR NOR
3
FIN SWE BEL CAN FRA
4
GER ITA TUR
DNP
ARG
16th 32
2016 Hoonigan Racing Division Ford Focus RS POR
18
HOC
3
BEL
19
GBR
14
NOR
14
SWE
13
CAN
10
FRA
6
BAR
16
LAT
16
GER
12
ARG
15
14th 63
2017 Hoonigan Racing Division Ford Focus RS BAR
9
POR
11
HOC
11
BEL
8
GBR
7
NOR
8
SWE
9
CAN
9
FRA
7†
LAT
14
GER
14
RSA
8
9th 112

Five championship points deducted for receiving three reprimands in a season.

Other motorsport activities

In 2005, Block along with his DC Shoes associates participated in the Gumball 3000 Rally. For the event they sent out three modified 2004 Subaru WRX STi's sponsored by DC Shoes.[18][19]

In 2006, Block competed in the One Lap of America competition along with Brian Scotto. They were teamed up in a 2006 Subaru WRX STi and finished forty-fifth overall.[20]

In 2006, for the Discovery Channel show Stunt Junkies, Block jumped his Subaru WRX STi rally car 171 feet (52 m) and a max height of 25 feet (7.6 m).[3] The whole episode was dedicated to Block attempting this stunt.

In 2007, Block joined the DC Shoes Snowboarding team at New Zealand's Snow Park.[3] Block did massive jumps and assisted in snowboarding tricks while driving his rally car on the mountain alongside the snowboarders. A crash after landing a large jump cracked one of the vertebrae in his spine, he was flown to the hospital. The session made the cover of the December 2007 issue of Snowboarder Magazine and closed out the MTN.LAB 1.5 DVD.[3]

In 2009, for the BBC show Top Gear, Block took James May out for Gymkhana-style driving at Block's stunt course at Inyokern Airport, an operational California airport, also starring Ricky Carmichael. In 2010 Block took the feature car from the previous episode (a Reliant Robin) for a lap of the Top Gear test track. He rolled the car and was unable to complete a lap but was unhurt.

On October 15, 2009, it was reported that Block was close to a deal to join the World Rally Championship in a new Ford team. Long time co-driver Alex Gelsomino was also reportedly involved in the deal. Former Subaru WRC driver Chris Atkinson has been reported to be lined up as Block's teammate in the all-new Monster Energy Drink Ford World Rally Team.[21]

On January 6, 2010, the announcement is made as Block joins up with Ford and begins his WRC career driving both a Ford Fiesta and Focus RS WRC.

On August 24, 2010, Block released the first of a three part Gymkhana 3 video release featuring his new Ford Fiesta.[22]

On September 14, 2010, Block's third Gymkhana video, featuring a Ford Fiesta, was released on YouTube.[23] The video got more than seven million views in its first week.

On August 16, 2011, the fourth Gymkhana video, The Hollywood Megamercial was released on YouTube, featuring Block driving around the Universal Studios backlot.[24]

On July 1, 2012, Block took the Silver Medal for Rallycross at X Games XVIII behind Sébastien Loeb.

On July 9, 2012, Block released his fifth Gymkhana video on YouTube, featuring Block driving his Ford Fiesta in San Francisco and Travis Pastrana on a dirtbike. After 24 hours, the video was viewed 5.1 million times, making it the top-viewed video of the previous week.[25]

In late 2014, Block battled through to the Spanish finals of Gymkhana GRID, eventually beating Jake Archer to take the win. He donated the €10,000 prize fund to the Keep A Breast Foundation charity.[26]

Block also holds the world record for the world's fastest snowcat, a modified Ford Raptor called a Trax STI.

Block appears in the 2015 Need for Speed video game as the style icon.

Involvement in Colin McRae: Dirt 2, Dirt 3, and Dirt: Showdown

Block is featured as a driver in Codemasters Colin McRae: Dirt 2, along with his Subaru Rally Team USA Impreza. In Dirt 3 he is seen as a driver and Gymkhana teacher, his Monster World Rally Team vehicles are available in the game, including the Ford Fiesta GYM 3, and the Ken Block Ford Focus WRC. Ken's Ford Fiesta and his Hoonigan/Monster livery appear extensively in Dirt: Showdown another Codemasters racing game with a more arcade feeling and demolition derby style Knockout and 8-Ball crossover racing events. His trademark gymkhana style of driving dominates the Head-to-Head and Trick Rush race modes as well as the Freestyle section.

References

  1. ^ "Catching Up With DC's Ken Block". Jeff Emig. Retrieved November 2, 2008.
  2. ^ a b "Official Site: Bio". kenblockracing.com. Retrieved November 2, 2008.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k "Ken Block". auto.dcshoes.com. Archived from the original on May 2, 2012. Retrieved November 2, 2008.
  4. ^ a b c d "Interview: Ken Block - Part 2". Carolyn Schonafinger. Archived from the original on May 2, 2012. Retrieved November 2, 2008.
  5. ^ a b c "2008 Subaru Rally Team USA". rally.subaru.com. Retrieved November 2, 2008.
  6. ^ a b c d "Ken Block Flies To His First Canadian Rally Win". snowboard-mag.com. Archived from the original on April 7, 2012. Retrieved November 2, 2008.
  7. ^ "Rally New York USA:USRC Results". rallynewyork.com. Archived from the original on June 6, 2008. Retrieved November 2, 2008.
  8. ^ a b "Travis Pastrana wins gold medal at 2008 X Games 14 Rally, Tanner Foust silver, as Dave Mirra and Ken Block share bronze". rallybuzz.stagetimes.com. Retrieved November 2, 2008. [dead link]
  9. ^ "Subaru Driver Ken Block Wins Rally Finale at LSPR, SRT USA Finishes 1-2 in Rally America Championship". specialstage.com. Retrieved November 2, 2008.
  10. ^ Top Gear, Season 13, Episode 3.
  11. ^ "Rally America". Rally America. Archived from the original on April 5, 2010. Retrieved November 12, 2010.
  12. ^ "Ken Block has Massive Wreck on Shakedown Stage". Rally World News. Retrieved March 24, 2011.
  13. ^ "WRC: Ogier rocks, Block rolls on Portugal shakedown". crash.net. Retrieved March 24, 2011.
  14. ^ "Driver Standings - WRC Results, Positions & Stage Times - wrc.com". Archived from the original on March 13, 2013. Retrieved March 10, 2013.
  15. ^ "WRC.com®- FIA World Rally Championship - Official Website - wrc.com".
  16. ^ Evans, David (January 13, 2016). "Ken Block commits to World Rallycross Championship for 2016". Autosport. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
  17. ^ "Mattias Ekström vann på Hockenheim" (in Swedish). Sveriges Television. May 8, 2016. Retrieved October 21, 2016.
  18. ^ "Teams 31 - 60". GTspirit.com. Archived from the original on June 5, 2012. Retrieved November 2, 2008.
  19. ^ "Rob Dyrdek back on the rally". gumball3000.com. Archived from the original on October 20, 2008. Retrieved November 2, 2008.
  20. ^ "2006 Tire Rack One Lap of America: Final Overall Results". onelapofamerica.com. Archived from the original on August 25, 2006. Retrieved November 2, 2008.
  21. ^ "autosport.com". autosport.com. Retrieved November 12, 2010.
  22. ^ "Gymkhana 3". DC Shoes. Archived from the original on November 26, 2010. Retrieved November 12, 2010.
  23. ^ "Ken Block: Gymkhana Three". AUSmotive.com. September 15, 2010. Retrieved November 12, 2010.
  24. ^ Sanchez, Karla. "Gymkhana Four – Ken Block Hoons in Hollywood". Motor Trend. Retrieved August 17, 2011. [permanent dead link]
  25. ^ Hardigree, Matt. "Gymkhana 5 Viewed 5.1 Million Times in 24 Hours". Jalopnik. Retrieved July 10, 2012.
  26. ^ Gratton, Ian. "NEWS: Ken Block wins Gymkhana GRID 2014". Drifted. Retrieved November 3, 2014.

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