Internet superstar, and self-confessed Hoon, Ken Block brought his smash hit viral videos to life last weekend with the final round of the Gymkhana World Tour held at Melbourne’s Calder Park.
The 43-year-old American, in Australia for this weekend’s round of the World Rally Championship in Coffs Harbour, wowed more than 7500 fans with some of the most spectacular, tyre-frying driving stunt driving ever seen.
And we there, in the passenger seat of his pumped-up, four-wheel drive Ford Fiesta to witness the action first hand. It’s difficult now to pinpoint which is the bigger star, Block himself or his Fiesta.
While there’s no denying the American is extremely skilled as he spins and slides his machine around a series of barrels – narrowly missing concrete walls along the way – the car itself is just as amazing. With more power than a V8 Supercar from its 2.0-litre turbocharged engine, it accelerates from 0-100km/h in an astonishing 2.0sec – faster than a Formula One car and almost twice as quick as a Bugatti Veyron (the world’s quickest production car) – and can slide sideways at ferocious speeds with blue smoke filling the cabin.
It’s intoxicating fun from the inside, and there’s little wonder why his four Gymkhana videos have amassed more than 20million hits.