Tragedy In Rally Racing – Icon Dies At 55

Ken Block, a professional rally driver turned driving icon, professional skateboarder, snowboarder, and motocross competitor, as well as co-founder of DC Shoes and Hoonigan Racing, died near his home in Utah on Monday at the age of 55 following a snowmobile accident around 2 p.m.

The death is being received by many as a tragedy, as Block amassed a large following through YouTube and social media. Many of his fans viewed him as not only an icon to the sport of driving, but also as an inspiration, as many of his fans wanted to attempt similar stunts and drifts as the late driving icon.

Throughout the early 2010s, Ken Block became a sensation, and his stunt driving videos took the world by storm, creating a new generation of stunt drivers. Block’s effect on the world of driving is comparable to the influence that Wally Parks, CJ Pappy Hart, and Don Garlits had on drag racing and the popularity of muscle cars throughout the 1950s into the 1970s. As a result of Block’s rally driving and stunt driving, four-wheel drive and all-wheel drive cars with engines typically only featuring a flat four or a v6 grew in popularity, such as the Subaru WRX and Audi Quattro models. On top of Ken Block’s stunt driving, the cars he drove were a spectacle as well; while the Subaru WRX (World Rally Experimental) typically features a flat-four engine, Block’s Subaru WRX would feature a 7.7-liter big-block V8 engine, which produced 1100 hp, and helped to make drifting videos that would quickly light up the entire screen with tire smoke.

On top of Block’s notoriety he massed through YouTube and other internet platforms, he was also featured during the prime years of BBC’s Top Gear (UK), where he was a featured guest in one of the show’s most popular segments of all time.

Block was known for his stunts and precision driving skills, as well as for his “Gymkhana” video series, in which he performs complex driving maneuvers in a variety of vehicles. Block has also competed in rally racing events around the world, including the World Rally Championship and the X Games. He has participated in the World Rally Championship (WRC), the X Games, and other high-profile racing competitions. In the WRC, Block has driven for the Ford and Hoonigan Racing Division teams, and he has earned several podium finishes throughout his career.


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