Archive for the ‘Ken Block’ Category

One million views in 24 hours, as of today its up to over 2 million views since it came out. Ken Block’s “Gymkhana 4” takes us on a wild ride through the backlot of SoCals Universal Studios, past familiar sets and backdrops. We even get BACON!

Chock full of special effects, it makes sense that they used Universal Studios as the backdrop for his latest video

If you haven’t seen it yet, check it out and tell us what you think

DC SHOES: KEN BLOCK’S GYMKHANA FOUR; THE HOLLYWOOD MEGAMERCIAL

I love how Travis is still around rocking his Subie even though many have shunned his circle track duties as of late. If you’re a true Travis Pastrana fan, you know that he hasn’t forgotten his Subie roots.

In this video that was just uploaded, Travis calls out Ken Block on his marketing campaign etc. It’s all good though and no one should take this all to seriously. After all, DC does cut Travis a paycheck from time to time. It’s like a friend calling you out during a game of ping pong… or fooseball… or maybe something a little more competitive.

Anyways, enjoy this video, I know I did (The car, not the women…. err, ladies… err… Grandmas?)

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I have to say, I am actually disappointed in the game Dirt 3.
On the packaging it states more rally content then ever before in the series, when the first game alone was a 100% rally game. Not to mention it’s heritage predecessor the colin mcrae series.
So far I have done like three rally stages in the career mode, and that’s another thing I’m not a big fan of. Now I know that racing games aren’t known for their career progression, but I really think they should be, because if you aren’t racing you’re looking at menus and choosing where next to race.
It’s so linear. Unlike Dirt 2 where you really only had to do the races you are a fan of, the third instalment gives you a path to follow. Not only that, but the game is based on the archaic point system, so they force you to “race” races you don’t want to but also pretty much forces what car you will drive just to make the points to progress (driving certain cars gives you more points).The reason why I put the word race in quotes is because half the time you are in a gymkhana. I like watching Ken Block’s videos, but it’s not as fun to play, especially when you have to place just to move forward.Though I must add, the soundtrack is exceptional 🙂
That’s my spiel

Our friend Yuji, from Subaru of Las Vegas / Zenkai Motorsports have this massive photo gallery of the images he ‘s taken at the Gymkhana Grid event! They’re beautiful photos and I think you’ll all enjoy them!

To see rest of the photos, check it out HERE.

Our old friend, Ken Block is hosting the Gymkhana Grid event this weekend and they made this funny little video. There will be several Subarus in attendance including Crawford Performance,Stephan Verdier, and Thomas Smith from Subaru of Las Vegas.

Check it out!

Want to get your hands on something unique? Well, the “Spy Gnome” Has been autographed by Travis Pastrana, Dave Mirra, Ken Block, and Tommi Makinen.

You can view the auction HERE

It’s for a good cause and I hope you all have a chance to take a look at it and even bid! As stated on the auction:

100% of the proceeds of this auction will go to Victory Junction, a camp for children with chronic medical conditions or serious illnesses, founded by Paul Newman and Kyle & Pattie Petty, as well as Dale Earnhardt Jr., Richard and Lynda Petty, Tony Stewart, The NASCAR Foundation and several more.

Good cause and we are glad that all the drivers signed it!

Well, the Formula Drift season has now finished and our favorite Subie Driver in the Formula Drift field has called it a season. We contacted our friend, Stephan Verdier driver of the Crawford Performance STi. We got a chance to talk to him about his season in Formula Drift, Rally Cross, XGames Rally, and the future.


 

Q: Stephan, thanks for joining back with us at Subie-Life.com! The Formula Drift season just ended for you and it’s been quite a busy one for you. What were the highlights of the season for you?

A: Thank you for having me back. To answer your question, unfortunately I don’t have any highlights in drifting this season. I had my worst season in 5 years. I made a lot of driving errors and mechanical failures. I’m kind of glad that the season is over so I can regroup and get ready for next season.

Q: Your car debuted at Long Beach Round 1 as an Iron Man 2 car, then made a few changes to a multi-color rally car, then back to a drift car. What was that experience like, having to change your Subaru so many times this season?

A: Yes, I was fortunate to get a sponsorship with Royal Purple for the movie Iron Man 2. It only was a deal for the first 2 races (in Formula Drift). Then I got invited to compete at the X-games in the Rallycross event. Since my deal with Iron Man2 was finished I decided to redo the scheme on my car, and keep it for the rest of the FD season. It was really fun to transform the car back and forth between drifting and rally. It’s much easier than people think, I only changed the suspension, transmission, turbo and brakes. The rest of the car was the same as drifting. Here’s a breakdown on what I did:
  • The suspension we went from Stance to Tein because Tein has been in rally for a long time and has a fantastic rally gravel suspension, then went back to the Stance for drifting
  • Gear box, Crawford performance landed me a  AWD Kaps sequential gearbox for the x-games. Sequential is a must in rally cross. I normally use a stock Sti box in drifting
  • Turbo, Garrett gave me a twin scroll that with the help of Crawford we install to replace the Garrett GT30 that use in drifting.
  • Brake, because we use 15 inch tire for gravel, I need smaller brake than the stock STI to fit the wheel, I used with the help of Subaru of Ontario stock wrx brakes.
  • To finish Crawford did a remap of the stock Ecu for the new turbo and GTI made some bumper and skid plates.

Q: I think everyone (including myself) was cheering for you to win at XGames in the Super Rally. What was that experience like for you to compete against factory supported vehicles? How did it feel to be door to door in a Rally Cross setting?
A: X-Games was my highlight of the season. It was unbelievable!!!. It was a surprise that we were that competitive. I knew driving wise I was as fast as the factory driver. Where I was the most worried, was about my car. Like I said that car was made for drifting and I had no experience in Rallycross. All the Euro-rally cross cars  made around 650hp on a 2L engine with a 45mm restrictor. I was using a 2.5L engine with a 45mm restrictor and was hopping to be around 500hp. I was confident with Crawford being involve since they’ve been making massive power on there 2.7L with the Time attack car however they never played with a restrictor, so I was a bit nervous. Crawford was able to make over 500 hp and be reliable.I was still under power over the other rallycross cars but because of the 10 inches tire rule, I knew that the Ford or Factory Suby wouldn’t be able to use their full power on gravel.
Everybody had anti-lag and launch control but I didn’t since I was still on my stock ecu. I knew the event was going to be tough.
It was a huge surprise when we qualified 2nd overall. The only guy that beat me was Travis (Pastrana) which has a purposely build Subaru XGames car.
Racing door to door in a stadium with cars screaming was amazing, I’m hooked on rallycross.
Q: What was the highlight for XGames for you?
A: The whole XGames was the highlight! Qualifying 2nd, winning my heat against (Ken) Block and (Dave) Mirra, bouncing off (Brian) Deagan on my first lap, and Catching Tanner (Foust) in our heat! Everything.
Q: As one of the few privateers in Formula Drift, how hard (or easy) is it for you to have to try and conserve funds for each event?
A: It’s really hard to compete in FD (Formula Drift) as a privateer, if you want to be competitive. Fortunately with the sponsorship of Subaru and Royal Purple I was able to do it, but it still cost me a lot of money. That’s the problem with FD now, it’s too expensive to have a competitive car and impossible to do it as a privateer. You might be able to get 1 decent result in the season but won’t be able to be competitive at every event. Cars now are really light and really powerful. The top cars are around 2500 pounds with 650 hp. Only a couple years back you just needed 400hp with a 2700 pounds car to win.
Q: In Vegas you experienced a pretty intense crash but we saw your car again recently at Sonoma and then Irwindale and it looks fine! How were you able to pull that off?
A: Las Vegas was an expensive weekend. I made a big mistake and destroyed the rear end of my car. I was able to buy a rear clip for $500 and take it to my body shops M.O.B.S in Anaheim, CA. They cut my car in half and welded the rear clip on. The car was fixed a week after the crash. 

Q: What new things did you learn from this Season of Formula Drift?

A: That I need a v8 and a light car. The level of driving is way higher than in 2009, same for the cars. I can’t do it as a privateer again. I will need to be part of a team to make it.
Q: Everyone wants to know, will you keep your current STi or go with the new Sedan?
A: In drifting I really doubt that I’ll be in a Subaru for next season. It’s not really the right type of racing for Subaru, as their “thing” is AWD. So, I don’t think I’ll be able to get any support from them (for next season). Also the Subaru platform is not ideal for drifting. You need a real RWD car to be competitive or spend a fortune to make the Suby work. I was able to get away with mine because the other cars were not as developed as they are now. But if Subaru want me to, I would love to do a new STI. I tried last year but couldn’t get the funding for it.
Q: Formula Drift for 2011? What about the new Rally Car series which is rumored to come around the West Coast next year?
A: 2011 Formula Drift, as right now, I don’t have any plan for it. I really want to be in it for 2011 but need to find a team. I can’t afford to do it as a privateer again. Rallycross, I want to be part of it too. My first plan is to drive for a team, I’m talking to 3 teams right now, hopefully I can make it happen. At worst I can use my car for selected West Coast Events. I think by SEMA will know the exact schedule and tv package. 

Q: Who would like to thank that helped you out?
A: There is lot of people that helped me this season: Subaru, Cooper Tires, Crawford Performance, Royal Purple, GTI, Stance, Tein, Garrett, RMR, Enkei, Ignite Fuel, Seibon, APR, I-Speed, and Subaru of Ontario.

Thank you Stephan for your time. Hopefully we can do a feature on your Subie!