Ken Block isn’t taking too kindly to Mad Media’s registration and use of the domain name Gymkhana.com and is taking to court to sue his former co-producers.
Last Friday, Block and his company Gravel Farms Racing, LLC., filed a lawsuit against Mad Media over the legalities of the latter’s use of the website Gymkhana.com. In the lawsuit, Block and GFR are arguing that Mad Media breached its contractual obligations to them by registering and using the domain name "Gymkhana.com."
“By registering and using the domain GYMKHANA.COM, Mad Media breached its contractual obligations to Plaintiffs to refrain from using the knowledge it gained from its contractual relationship with Plaintiffs to misappropriate, interfere with, or profit from opportunities and property in the GYMKHANA brand,” the lawsuit said.
Jalopnik reached out to Mad Media to take their side on the matter and Joshua Martelli of Mad Media defended the company’s decision to register the site. “The automotive sport of Gymkhana has been around since the early 1900’s," he said. "No one has the right to prevent the public from using the word gymkhana to report on, discuss, or promote the sport - especially on a website.”
So according to Mad Media, gymkhana is a sport that’s been around longer than any of us reading this have been alive and Block has no ownership rights to the word. On the contrary, Block owns the trademark for Gymkhana and fired back at Mad Media, claiming that the company did not own the URL "Gymkhana.com" and that Mad Media purchased the URL while they were working for GFR.
"This is the part we find extremely unethical," Block said. "When you hire any company to work for you, it is expected that they will not try to steal from you and build something from your creative project."
Expect more twists and turns akin to Block’s actual Gymkhana videos from what’s looking like a long legal bout between these two companies.
In case you’ve forgotten the three Gymkhana videos these two companies collaborated on, you can watch all thee - or four - videos after the jump!
The Lexus LFA is unquestionably one of the best-sounding exotic sports cars currently on the market. Its 552 horsepower, 4.8-liter V10 engine delivers an incredible howl unmatched by any of its competitors and the following video helps to demonstrate just how incredible the LFA sounds. Oh yeah, and it also appears to be quite tail-happy too.
Captured at an exclusive Lexus Spindle Night in Odaiba, Tokyo, Japan, three LFAs, including the uber-exclusive LFA Nurburgring Edition were brought together into an outdoor arena to perform what only can be described as a lovely Japanese ballet.
After all, drifting is arguably the largest and most internationally-recognized sport to have ever come out of the Land of the Samurai, and this video helps to demonstrate just how happy the Japanese are to test the true performance capabilities of every car out there.
Check out the video above and keep the following performance stats in mind. As mentioned, the LFA’s 4.8-liter V10 engine pumps out a Lamborghini Gallardo-equalling 552hp at an incredible 8,800 rpm at 354 lb-ft of torque at 6,800 rpm. Most impressively however, is the fact that 90 percent of that torque is available between 3,700 rpm and the car’s 9,000 rpm redline!
The fellas over at Speedhunters.com have found a pretty good way to spend their time. Together with KW, the two companies have paired up to build a special Toyota GT-86 drift car that comes with a ridiculous body kit and an even more ridiculous Toyota Supra engine. It even has a cool new name: the 86X.
To give the car a decidedly drifty look, Speedhunters and KW fitted a TRA Kyoto 6666 Customs GT Rodeo Special Rocket Bunny wide body prototype fender conversion on the sports car to go with a new livery design that was done by the fine folks over at As Technical University. In order to give the car a full drifting dress down, the entire interior was modified to serve its drifting purpose. Instead of the usual digs that come with a GT-86, KW and Speedhunters took all the unneeded components out in favor of FIA seats, a GS Performance steering wheel, a Takata FIA harnesses, an automatic circuit breaker setup, custom dashboard switches, a throttle pedal assembly, and a custom steering column.
The 86X Drift Car will also be set up with two different 2JZ-GTE Supra engines, one of which produces 640 horsepower and 605 lb/ft of torque. The second engine - a 3.4-liter 2JZ-GTE Supra engine - will produce a staggering 800 horsepower and 738 lb/ft of torque. The powertrain is then mated to a four-speed transmission from Mid-Valley. The car also uses an Advanced Clutch Technology (ACT) triple disc race clutch and an ACT custom flywheel, a driveshaft courtesy of Ingar at Powertrain, and rear axles by The Driveshaft Shop.
All in all, the project took only 37 days to finish and has already competed in a number of drift competitions in Europe.
Few men get to have as much fun as Chris Harris does, as he is constantly beating the hell out of cars and getting paid to do so. So for the most part, we all live vicariously through his videos. In his latest installment, he takes on a car that we haven’t seen too much of here in the states, but is vastly popular, per Harris’ video, in the European market.
This elusive slab of carbon fiber and tubular steel is the BAC Mono. In the terms of a race car, its 280-horsepower 2.3-liter Duratec Ford engine with Cosworth-built pistons and forged rods is paltry. However, when you mate that up to a flat-shifting, paddle-shift, 6-speed trans, and a 540 kg (1,190-pound) chassis and body, you have one mean machine.
This British rocket hits a top speed of 170 mph and sprints to 60 in just 2.8 seconds – not too shabby for a glorified Focus engine, huh? Add in a rain-soaked track with plenty of twists and turns with Chris Harris behind the wheel, and you have a whole lot of BAC Mono tail wagging. Despite all of the oversteer, Harris repeatedly boasts how easy the Mono is to control. This becomes obvious when he doesn’t spin it out even once, despite swinging that tail end out pretty wide at times.
Check out the above video to see for yourself. If you’re able to, crank up the volume too, so you can get a good listen to that high-revving Ford power plant.
With all of our past Photo of the Week images simply being pictures of stationary cars, we thought this week we’d bring you something even more special. The following picture taken by Bruno Terena definitely meets those prerequisites.
The following image was captured in Serra do Rio do Rastro, Brazil back in 2010 where Rhys Millen took to the mountainous roads in one of many promotional activities for his sponsor, Red Bull.
Now you may be asking yourself as to what separates this drifting photo from the thousands of others circling the net? Well, let me describe the reasons. First, it’s very rare that one will stumble upon a drifting photo actually captured out in the wilderness rather than a ‘drifting arena’ in the middle of a bustling city. Second, we absolutely adore how this image manages to capture both the Hyundai Genesis drifter and the stunning backdrop in one frame.
Finally, the awesome smoke trail following the Genesis up the mountain and around the hairpin in the center of the photo also played a part in our selection for this weeks’ Photo of the Week.
This time around, the stage was set for the urban jungle that is San Francisco. Just as we expected - and hoped - Block absolutely takes the Bay by storm, complete with sick drifts, plenty of burnt rubber, and mind-bending jumps that completely blew us away. Then there’s a Travis Pastrana cameo in there too. We had hoped that he would do a few stunts of his own, but we certainly aren’t complaining on how the finished product ended up looking.
Gymkhana 5, you made our day and hopefully, the wait for 6 won’t take as long.
UPDATE 07/13/2012: Ford has unveiled a series of exclusive new images of Ken Block’s Gymkhana FIVE: Ultimate Urban Playground; in San Francisco. The car featured in this series is a Focus ST developed jointly by Ford’s Team RS in Europe and its Special Vehicles Team (SVT) in the United States.
Capital punishment. It’s one of the most fiercely debated issues plaguing the world and whether or not it should be performed, no matter the severity of the crime committed. This latest case is sure to spark off even more topical debate about the issue as a man from Saudi Arabia was recently sentenced to death by public beheading after killing two people.
The man, identifying himself as “Mustannish,” killed two spectators a few months back when he lost control of his ‘drifting’ car in a reckless form of outlaw driving known commonly as “Hagwalah” which takes place in the land-locked nation.
In short, it simply involves hoons taking to the streets in stock Honda’s and Toyota’s and performing dangerous slides and spins in their cars with spectators watching the action from just meters away.
If you want to find out more about these hoons, then simply head over to YouTube were you’ll find a selection of videos, including the one above, of these drivers and their idiotic ways of showing-off. Keep in mind however, that several clips posted to YouTube have depicted spectators being hit by the cars, although a select few have been removed due to their severity.
Anyway, back to the issue at hand. The following video purportedly depicts “Mustannish,” which directly translates to “he who ignores,” in one of his many failed attempts at impressing the crowd before crashing into a sand bank. Fortunately, in this particular video, no one seems to be injured.
However, the case which has landed the man in hot water occurred when he plowed into the crowd, killing two, and the aforementioned punishment was swiftly handed down: Public beheading by sword. Not pleasant.
Despite this firm punishment, it’s currently unclear if and when the penalty will actually take place, as another man who killed three in 2005 under similar circumstances had his death penalty wavered and instead faced 3,000 lashes and 20 years in prison.
We’ve already documented the friendly “feud” between Red Bull teammates Travis Pastrana and Sebastien Loeb. We knew from Loeb’s acceptance video to Pastrana’s challenge that his team was working on a new version of the Citroën DS3 tuned specifically for his X-Games and RallyCross debut.
An important part of making a completely different version of a racecar is the fact that the driver has to thoroughly test it. That’s to be expected, but in true Red Bull style, they made a rather dramatic review of the car and put it on the Interwebz for us all to enjoy. While the actual car footage is scarce in the video, its awesomeness makes up for lack of volume. The absolute symphony of noise that this car makes is enough to raise the hair on the backs of our necks. It’s like the automotive version of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9.
In the video, Loeb lets us know that the X-Games version of the DS3 is far more powerful than the one he runs in the WRC. Citroën racing engineer, Cyrille Jourdan, chimes in to give us an idea of just how fast this car is, telling us that it hits 60 mph in less than 3 seconds – talk about a ”hot hatch,” sheesh.
The laidback Loeb proceeds to let us know the obvious, that it’s “fun to drive” this finely tuned automotive gem. Seeing the stacks of worn out tires just mere seconds after he says that it’s fun shows us that he has definitely had his fair share of fun with it. We say it’s time he gives us a crack at it!
You can see the video above and make sure to crank up your speakers to catch every last decibel that this wonderful machine puts out. It’s simply awesome.
When one thinks of a drift car, an electric-powered urban transport vehicle definitely doesn’t fit the bill. In an ideal world, one would want a rear-wheel drive car powered by a front-mounted engine producing as little as 200HP like the Scion FR-S and Subaru BRZ. That being said, the Renault Twizy does have at least one of those aspects with it being rear-wheel drive.
It’s almost hard to believe just how little power the Twizy has when one really thinks about it. Any car below 200 or even 150HP is often viewed as underpowered in today’s modern world of automobiles, but the Twizy only pumps out 17 horsepower from its tiny electric motor which also produces 70Nm of torque which can help propel it to 75 km/h.
However, Autocar set out to find out if the tiny 1+1 vehicle could drift when thrown around a drifting circle covered in water, and what would you know, the car turned out to be quite the drift machine.
However, due to the fact that the Twizy is almost laughably underpowered, it genuinely seems like the Twizy is drifting in slow motion and the presenter goes onto reveal that under these conditions, its battery would only last 10 minutes.
Now we’re sure no one out there is going to purchase a Twizy for its drifting capabilities, but it’s definitely interesting to know that almost any car out there can drift.
Ken Block promised a return to roots for Gymkhana 5 and judging by the first trailer of the highly-anticipated video, the man wasn’t lying.
Not that it needs any more teasing, but Ken Block and his peeps still decided to go that route with Gymkhana 5, providing us with a 37-second appetizer of what we’re all in store for.
Block is already on record saying that Gymkhana 5 will leave the theatrics of Gymkhana 4 behind in order to concentrate on bringing it back to the kind of action-packed, tire-screeching, rubber-burning stunts we’ve become accustomed to.
This time, Block brought his trusty Ford Fiesta H.F.H.V. rally racer to the streets of San Francisco, where it laid waste to a whole load of things, including a barge.
Confused? Check out the video and find out!
Don’t forget, the video debuts on July 9, at which point, we’ll be glued to our monitors waiting in earnest for it to drop.