The Monster World Rally team will first head to Vienna, Austria, where the Gymkhana World Tour kicks offs on July 10. A live audience will be treated to a Gymkhana run that will in turn be filmed for a new soon-to-be-YouTube-sensational video.
From Austria, Ken Block and his crew will move to Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, California. This July 23 stop on the tour is the week prior to X Games 17, after which Block will stick around to try and pilot his Fiesta to Rallycross gold. Following that, the Gymkhana tour heads Down Under to bring tire-smoking antics to the birthplace of Hoon. Ford Australia will welcome Block in Melbourne for the weekend of September 2-3 just prior to Rally Australia.
This is going to be a smokey summer for Ken Block, and an expensive one for his tire sponsor, Pirelli. Click past the jump for all the details in the full press release.
DEARBORN, Mich. – Ken Block and the spectacle that is Gymkhana are synonymous. As summer rolls around, fans of Block's over-the-top, on-the-edge driving style start to get their annual craving for a Gymkhana fix. Block's Gymkhana THREE Part 2 has over 32.3 million views on YouTube since its release last September.
So what is Block doing for an encore to top the biggest Gymkhana ever?
He will take his Ford Fiesta and the Gymkhana party to the people with the inaugural Gymkhana World Tour featuring stops in Austria, Australia and the United States. Ford Motor Company is a partner of all the Gymkhana World Tour stops which will coincide with key competition dates for Block in the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC) and at X Games 17.
"I'm really excited about my Gymkhana World Tour this summer. I'm delighted that Ford is continuing to support my love of Gymkhana in the way that they are," said Block. "It's something that I really enjoy doing and the fans love it as well, so to have Ford on board as I go to do this sort of thing is amazing."
Designed to bring the Gymkhana experience to a live audience, each GWT stop will be unique, not only in its location but also in the content and layout of the Gymkhana course. Block will personally design the course and develop the Gymkhana routine.
Out of each stop on the tour, Monster World Rally Team will create mini Gymkhana videos which will showcase the event. The first GWT event will be on July 10 in Vienna, Austria. Ford of Europe is planning a two-day celebration (July 9-10) of Block's auto antics with special displays and a Gymkhana festival. Thirty winners of a Ford of Europe Gymkhana promotion will get a chance to ride along with Block in the Gymkhana Fiesta. Ford of Europe is also offering up 43 limited edition Monster Fiestas to consumers as part of the event.
Gymkhana World Tour Stop 2 will be in the United States on July 23, the weekend prior to X Games 17. The event will be held at Dodger Stadium in an elevated area overlooking down town Los Angeles. A limited number of tickets will be available to the public. The event will kick off a big week of build up for Ford, Block and the Monster World Rally Team culminating in Fiesta's quest for a three-peat at X Games and the unveil of a major national consumer promotion which will involve Ford Racing's action motorsports programme.
The final stop in Australia will be held the week prior to the Rally Australia at Calder Park in Melbourne on September 2-3. While in Australia Block will be busy not only with his GWT event but he plans to visit both Ford plants in Victoria to meet Ford employees. He will also get an opportunity to drive a V8 Supercar as well as meet fellow Monster athlete, surfer Tyler Wright, who will get a chance to ride along with Block at the GWT event.
"What started out as an opportunity for Ken to go out and apply his skills in Gymkhana has now evolved into a worldwide phenomena that has garnered over 70 million views on YouTube and now has become a world tour," said Jamie Allison, Director Ford North America Motorsports. "We are thrilled and excited because it is Ken showcasing to the world our global platform, Ford Fiesta, and just how fun Ford cars are to drive."
"Ford Australia is delighted and proud to welcome Ken and his team 'Down Under' for what promises to be a very exciting display and never before seen in our part of the world," said Chris Styring, Group Manager – Motorsport, Sponsorship, Events Ford Motor Company of Australia. "Ken's show will no doubt appeal to both our male and female customers and demonstrate some of the fantastic performance attributes of the Fiesta."