According to BFG, their new Comp2 tire promises drivers the ability to accelerate faster, corner harder, and brake in a shorter distance than their competitors. When asked exactly who they consider to be their competition for this class of tire, BFG pointed to Dunlop Direzza DZ101, Yokohama S-Drive, Kumho Ecsta SPT KU31, Cooper and Hankook Ventus V12 tires. Read more...
The Olympus Rally is a legendary event that people used to hear about in the advertising campaigns of big car manufacturers. In the 1980s, big car companies like Toyota, Nissan, Audi and Lancia had factory backed rally teams racing through the backroads surrounding Seattle Washington. It even used to be a leg of the World Rally Championship! That’s right – WRC on US soil!
If you love the glory days of WRC like I do, watch this video, which features cars like the Lancia Delta Integrale, Audi Quattro, Nismo S12 200SX, Toyota Team Europe‘s MA70 Supra and a privateer AE82 Corolla FX-16 GT-S! There’s even a few short clips of Rod Millen driving a Mazda 323 GTX (Mazda Familia) all wheel drive rally car! (more…)
2011 was a pretty spectacular year of drifting for me. Being a Canadian, I got to see a whole heck of a lot of America this year – not only from all the different rounds of Formula Drift that I and the rest of the Drift Posse participated in, but also as a result of a tour that saw me flying around the country for three months. (more…)
Ireland has many good points and many bad points. Over the past few years, the one thing that stands out as a major flaw of this fine island is its inability to provide its islanders with a weather system that 1) they can predict successfully and 2) actually obeys the seasons. When it's summer, let it be sunny and warm and, when it's winter, let it be dark and cold. Here in Ireland, you can never plan for any outdoor activity with any sense of certainty. This is the country that can have any season on any given day of the year and, my friends, that is only a slight exaggeration on my part. However, there is a huge plus to living here, from a "driver's" point-of-view. There is an abundance of mesmerizing roads that snake, dip and jump their way through the lush green countryside. So, I thought you MotorMavens readers might like to come see Ireland through the eyes of a rally enthusiast. Read more...
Look forward to a full edit of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb in the upcoming 2011 DVD from Justin Shreeve and Joe Ayala! (more…)
Subaru of America has released a new YouTube video of the 2011 Subaru WRX STi setting an all-time course record for the historic Isle of Man TT Mountain Course. The 5 minute 25 second video highlights in graphic detail the speed and drama surrounding rally driver Mark Higgins‘ lap that averaged 115.356 MPH. After the run, Higgins talks through the “moment” at Bray Hill when he momentarily loses, and then regains, control of the WRX STI at more than 150 MPH. (more…)
Recently I’ve been checking out a lot of different videos; seeing what’s sick and what produced a dry, wheezing cough. I came across this one on ContourHD’s site. It features some truly inspired rally driving.
In the video, we ride along with Mads Østberg and his co-driver Jonas Andersson through Rally Sørland Shakedown in their Ford Fiesta S2000. To give you a little insight into the mad skills of these dudes, they beat Ken Block in the Swedish round of World Rally Championship and came second overall! And if you are wondering what the language is, it’s Swedish. By the way, my Swedish is a little rusty but I believe Jonas is actually reading Mads one of the Twilight books…..silly Swedes. LOL! (more…)
Well, I suppose the Global Rallycross Championship is just like that - but replace the budget rallycars with fully-built factory-backed professional race cars with full welded rollcages, built engines, and top notch suspension and safety equipment. Also, replace the everyday-Joe shadetree mechanic type with professional drivers from the X-Games, Formula Drift, Pike's Peak International Hillclimb, and the World Rally Championship (WRC). Oh yeah... and replace the dirt parking lot with a humongous man-made dirt course, complete with dirt ramp for catching some big air! This, my friends, is the Global Rallycross Championship. It sure as hell sounds exciting, doesn't it?!
Before you look at the rest of the photos, I really should mention that the Global Rallycross Championship at Irwindale was pretty much the coolest event that nobody knew about. Read more...
Keeping with my current obsession with Group B rally and looking to keep a pattern going, I present to you a compilation video of various Group B cars, and more importantly, the glorious sounds they make. While there are always going to be cars that make wonderful noises that make you feel all tingly inside, you’ll be hard pressed to find anything that is as aurally pleasing as the likes of an Audi Quattro hammering on the rev-limiter. Everything about Group B was absolutely mythic. The speed, the power, the sound, the driving conditions (whether that be the weather itself or the audacity of the crowds). One might even think that the Gods themselves took on the sport, which would explain the talent behind the wheel. But that’s enough rambling from me. Sit back, turn up the volume, and enjoy! (more…)
While cruising through the internet recently I stumbled across this video of Ari Vatanen, Finnish World Championship rally driver. You might recognize some of his work in the classic short, Climb Dance. Here you’ll see him blasting down the narrow roads on the Isle of Man in the Manx Rally, scaring the crap out of his co-driver in the process.
While I’m sure that we all like to think that we are somewhat competent behind the wheel of a car or are, in fact, very skilled armchair racers, I bet you can’t watch this and not feel a little bit uneasy or say anything other than (or the likes of) “Dear God.” I’m making that bold assumption because, after all, if you’re here and reading this you must have some interest in cars and therefore you can see my connection. This is driving at its purest. Just take notice of how much he works the wheel even when the car is going in a straight line. The amount of skill and absolute balls these men possessed blows my mind completely. One might even say he is a master of sisu, a Finnish word which translates to “driving with guts.” (more…)
Peanut butter and jelly. Macaroni and cheese. Ham and burgers. What do these things have in common? It seems nearly impossible to have one without the other. Ken Block and Subaru also share this likeness. Regardless, it seems that Ken is leaving the Japanese Pleiades Oval for that of the classic American Blue Oval.
DEARBORN, Mich., Jan. 6, 2010 – Ford Motor Company announced today that it is teaming up with Ken Block, the California-based action sports icon-turned-rally driver, for future global motorsports opportunities.
Block, the 2005 Rally America Rookie of the Year and a three-time medalist at X Games, has cultivated a tremendous following with his Gymkhana videos on YouTube. In 2010, Block will campaign a Ford Focus in the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC) and a Ford Fiesta in Rally America and X Games.
“I am stoked to be rallying in a Ford. They are an impressive force in the sport,” said Ken Block. “From the days of the 1970s Escorts to the Group B RS200 to the modern-day Focus and now the Fiesta, Ford just does an excellent job at rally and I couldn’t be happier to now be part of this amazing heritage. Not to mention my dad would be proud. He was a dedicated Ford guy.”
“Ken Block has established himself as an action sports competitor and a rising star in the world of American rally racing,” said Jamie Allison, director Ford North America Motorsports. “We are excited to have him on our team to help promote our new global products, the 2011 Ford Fiesta and 2012 Ford Focus.”
Rallying is a crucial part of Ford’s global motorsports strategy and provides the company with the opportunity to showcase the true performance capabilities of Ford’s products. Since its support of rallying began, Ford has won three WRC titles and 73 individual events. And, last year in North America, Ford’s participation in the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb and X Games 15 were key elements for the launch of the Ford Fiesta for the U.S.
“Thanks to our participation in WRC, rallying has always played a key role in Ford’s global motorsports programs,” said Allison. “Ford is the only manufacturer that could provide Ken with global rally opportunities.”
“We’re delighted that Ken Block has chosen to team up with Ford to develop his rallying activities beyond America and into the global arena,” said Gerard Quinn, Ford of Europe’s senior motorsports manager. “Ford and its U.K.-based rally partner, M-Sport, is looking forward to welcoming Ken to the wider team of talented rally drivers using Ford vehicles to compete in this demanding sport at the highest level internationally.”
While it may seem implausible to imagine Ken piloting anything but a Subaru… something tells me that his wild antics and crazy style will follow suit behind the wheel of a Ford.
Best of luck to Ken and his crew in 2010!
:: Andy Sapp
There is something about this photo that appeals to me. Surely the creators of the Mercedes Benz SLC 500 never pondered it’s potential as a rally machine, but here she is – caked in grime, looking right at home sliding through the mud! I like the juxtaposition of a luxury symbol racing through the filthiest of conditions. Perhaps I feel a connection with this photo because of my passion for BMW drifting.
Regardless, you can’t deny that the brush guard, cracked windshield, and soiled decor prove that this car is strictly business… and according to this snapshot, business is good!
:: Andy Sapp
On the 26th and 27th of September, organisers decided to do a Kop Hill Commemorative Run to bring the sounds and sights and even smells (mmm, Castrol R) back to Kop Hill again. Over 250 cars and bikes were there, ranging in age from the 1900s right up to 1980s and even some very special modern cars. Read more...
With all this excellent coverage of sideways hoonage on Motor Mavens recently, I thought we could use a little dose of vertical shenanigans. Here’s a clip of Russian rallyer Evgeny Novikov taking his Citroën C4 to the very limit, and perhaps a little beyond, of its designed purpose.
Props to the roadside photographers and their balls of steel, although I must chuckle a little at the guy in the video and his missed opportunity at what would’ve been an amazing shot. Remember to always be ready for that money shot, but don’t forget to have an exit strategy too!
Ahhh… WRC. The World Rally Championship is something we’re always definitely excited about. This teaser video we found on Youtube shows clips from WRC action in Greece, Turkey and Finland. We definitely NEED to get out there and shoot some footage ourselves! However, until that happens, enjoy watching WRC footage from the folks at 247 Motoring.
:: Lieze Truter
It seems that everybody has been talking and Twittering about the much anticipated release of DC Shoes Founder/rally driver extraordinaire Ken Block‘s new “Gymkhana 2” video.
We just wanted to show everyone this link – it’s finally up! Ken Block shows us all how hard he rips it in his new Subaru Impreza WRX STi! Instead of having members of his DC Snowboard team grind off of his carbon fiber WRC Impreza wing, Ken decided to inject a little bit of Hollywood into his newest viral video – aside from having a cameo appearance by Rob Dyrdek (DC skater, star of MTV’s Rob & Big and Fantasy Factory), it’s complete with explosions, crash test dummies, cool near misses with big rigs, cranes, pylons, and umm… he also comes really close to driving his car right off the dock, right into the water.
We wonder when he’s gonna take some time out of his already busy schedule (and full Rally America season) to compete in the Formula Drift series..? What do you guys think? Would you rather watch Ken Block at rally events or at drifting events?