Rally Driver Ken Block Passed Away After a Snowmobile Accident

5 months, 1 week ago - 3 January 2023, autoevolution
Ken Block
Ken Block
Rally driver Ken Block passed away after a snowmobile accident. The American racing driver was known for his adventures on four wheels, while also being a co-founder of DC Shoes.

Many had only heard of Block's Hoonigan brand, while some knew him from the Gymkhana series.

Regardless of how you have come to learn about Block and his stunts, the 55-year-old American is no more. His passing was announced on the Hoonigan official channel on Instagram, and fans are asked to respect the family's privacy.

Kenneth Paul Block started competing in rallying back in 2005, behind the wheel of a 2005 Subaru WRX STi. With Alex Gelsomino as his co-driver, he won the Rally America Rookie of the Year award. The following year, Block signed a sponsorship with Subaru, alongside his DC rally teammate, Travis Pastrana. The pair would also compete in various events together, as well as make viral videos.

Starting 2007, Block began competing in the World Rally Championship as well and managed to achieve 19 podiums by the end of the season in all his racing events that year. In 2008, Ken Block obtained his first rally win in Canada while driving the all-new 2008 Subaru WRX STi in a factory-backed effort.

While known mostly in the U.S. up until 2008, Ken Block became an internet sensation starting with his appearance on Top Gear, which was followed by the filming and publishing of Gymkhana 2, which is described as "the most viral video of 2009." Published 13 years ago, the video amassed 52 million views, while its predecessor was seen by over 20 million people at the time of the release of the second clip.

Ken Block also compete in the FIA World Rallycross Championship between 2014 and 2017 in various Ford models. His motorsport experience also involved the X Games, where he obtained two bronze medals and a silver medal in four entries from 2006 to 2008, all with Subaru.

Block signed partnerships with Ford, the manufacturer that ended up having the most appearances in the Gymkhana series. That partnership ended in January 2021, and Block initially announced his return to Subaru, only to team up with Audi on several projects.

Most of Block's Gymkhana videos, as well as related ones, were with various Ford models, such as the Hoonicorn, Hoonitruck, and The Cossie, among others. Ken Block is also featured in several video games.

The first of those projects with Audi was Electrikhana, which saw the specially-built Audi S1 Hoonitron in Las Vegas. Sadly, we will never know what Ken Block planned to do with the Gymkhana series, and it does not matter anymore.

The American racing driver is survived by his wife, Lucy, and their three daughters. One of his daughters, Lia, had begun racing despite still being a teenager. The racing driver's daughter had just unveiled her first Audi project car on January 2, 2023. The unveiling announcement of the Audi was the last post made by Ken Block on his Instagram, followed by a series of images of leisure vehicles covered by snow.

Ken will be missed by his fans, friends, and family.

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