Ken Block has accomplished many things in his career, including being a professional rally driver with the Monster World Rally Team, one of the co-founders and recently appointed Chief Brand Officer of DC Shoes, and a major competitor in skateboarding, snowboarding, and motocross races. All of those accomplishments aside, the one thing Block is mainly known for is being the man behind Gymkhana.
So, Ken Block’s now a globe-trotter. Surprise, surprise.
Of course, he’s not actually doing it in real time, but this partnership between Block and GoPro has yielded some impressive results.
First, they went to the frozen woods of Russia to film a Gymkhana-like video that called for Block to smash GoPro cameras along the way. Now, Block and GoPro are back on U.S. soil, specifically in a technical forested rally course in Potosi, Missouri.
As is always the case with a guy like Ken Block, you better expect and prepare for some nutty things to happen in this video. You have to have a new level of appreciation for Block’s navigator who somehow manages to keep his wits together through all those bumps to give out instructions from that notebook of his.
And in case you missed out on Block’s Russian exploits, click past the jump to check it out.
Ken Block has been making the rounds in Europe lately. After a stop in Hungary, which resulted in some serious fun with the Ford Sierra, Block and the boys over at GoPro decided to have some fun in the frozen woods of Mother Russia.
The promo video actually had an objective: have Block "kill" as many of these cameras as he could. He’s not riding a an old Sierra; this time, it’s his trusty rally Ford Focus he goes to battle with against the prying lenses of GoPro HD Hero 2 cameras.
It’s a rollicking, fun video that we’ve come accustomed to from a dude like Ken Block. Having an "objective" like smashing cameras along the way only makes it that much more entertaining.
If you’re looking for an unexpected ending, stick to the end of the video and you’ll see why some local Russians apparently aren’t too fond of Block.
If you need any reminder just how awesome Ken Block is, click past the jump to see the complete set of videos of the web series that made him a household name: Gymkhana.
Ken Block is one of the most famous racing personalities in the world and anytime fans have a chance to ride shotgun with Block in the driver’s seat, it’s a treat not a lot of people will say “no” to.
Recently, Block took his hooning skills to Budapest to treat some fans to a ride of a lifetime; that is if you consider driving the Ford Fiesta ST around an ice rink as a “ride of a lifetime.”
Considering the difficulty of driving around an ice rinkion a Fiesta ST, it’s safe to say that Block wouldn’t be able to execute the kind of Gymkhana-like stunts that he’s come to be known for. Nevertheless, having this man behind the wheel of a car with nothing but pure, unadulterated fun fueling him is still the stuff of awesomeness.
Check out the video above and be sure to click past the jump to know more about the Ford Fiesta ST.
When you’re a master drifter like Ken Block, you usually don’t make a whole lot of mistakes when you’re in a drift session. But every so often, the cat jumps out of the bag and you’re left with, at least in this case, smashed rear wheels.
For other drifters, that’s a cause for concern. For Ken Block, well, he "just ain’t care.”
Probably more telling is the way Block handled the crash to his beloved Ford Fiesta. There were no fumes of frustration or resigned exasperation; just a smile on the face knowing that things like this can and still happen, even to the best of ’em.
And to his credit, Block even made a pretty cool video out of his crash. Now that’s somebody who knows how to laugh at his boo-boos and still make a pretty cool video out of it.
Check out the video of Block’s mishap and the entertaining aftermath that followed.
Over the years that Ken Block has wowed us with his distinctly styled Ford Fiesta HFHV, we’ve begun to associate the man with the car’s appealing white-black-and-green color scheme.
Well, with a new year apparently comes a new color scheme. And a new headquarters to boot.
Block’s Hoonigan Racing Division has decided to move into a new headquarters and to celebrate that decision, the team has also changed their colors. While there was a clear distinction of how the old colors worked - white base, black paint splatter and plenty of lime green touches - this new color setup is a little more, shall we say, colorful.
The inspiration comes from Block’s fascination with the "80s and early 90s skateboarding graphics, as well as Miami Vice-era offshore powerboats and a dash of hair metal and old school hip hop mixed in for good measure."
That long description apparently translates to a matte-black base with touches of blue, red, green and orange, and a slice of Americana in the form of the U.S. flag on the roof scoop. As always, sponsorship logos are prevalent on the car, accounting for the rainbow-like hues on the Fiesta HFHV.
Moving onto the new “eco-friendly” HRD HQ, which looks “conducive to the kind of work they do.” The industrial look has been divided into two separate areas, including a workshop and a creative office space with plenty of touches of fun sprinkled in. Suffice to say, “boring” is the last word you’d think of in describing this office.
Six months after Ken Block released Gymkhana 5, we now have a pretty good idea on how the hooning series was made. It’s a little odd to release a "making-of" video so long after the actual thing was released, but then again, you won’t find any complaints from us.
Besides, there’s always something to learn about extravagant productions like this. If you recall, Gymkhana 5 was set in San Francisco and featured some of the hottest drifts and hooks done on some of the Bay Area’s most famous landmarks.
That video shows off the creativity, the thought process, and Block’s overall talent that went into creating a production like this. All of this work was in the name of giving drift fans something to look forward to every year.
Check out the "Making of Gymkhana 5" and if you’re in the mood, you can hop on over after the jump to watch Gymkhana 5.
In case you had any doubts about the global reach of the Gymkhana phenomenon, look no further than the United Kingdom to understand that its popularity is far-reaching.
The event was the finals of Gymkhana GRiD and it served up the kind of racing and drifting action that had everybody in the UK scratching the Gymkhana bug. Ken Block and Vaughn Gittin Jr. were the headline names at the event, yet they weren’t the only big names in attendance.
Some of the world’s finest drifters were also on hand for the event, including Liam Doran, Paul ‘Smokey’ Smith, Buttsy Butler and Terry Grant. Somehow, through all that burning rubber and smoking tires, there was also plenty to take away from the festivities, which culminated with the crowning of the winners of the Gymkhana GRiD series.
Check out the video for a brief recap of the event and, as always, enjoy all the smoking and screeching by turning up the volume of those speakers.
Any time Ken Block is on a video doing some hooning magic, it’s bound to get some serious attention from a lot of folks. The master of Gymkhana has earned that distinction and his latest piece of hoonage is no exception to the attention.
Created by ’The Hoonigans,’ Block finds himself in the final round of the Formula DRIFT 2012 season at the Irwindale Speedway in California. Riding his trusty Ford Fiesta HFHV, Block took to the course and did what he always seems to do better than anybody else: smoke the hell out of those tires.
The stunts aren’t as complicated as any of his Gymkhana videos, but that’s more because of the nature of the track than anything else. Nonetheless, it still makes for an insane drift ride, something Block appeared to have no problem doing as evidenced by the smoke coming out of those tires.
Check out Ken Block and his Fiest HFHV leave a mark on the Irwindale Speedway like only he can.
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!
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.