YouTube star Ken Block dies in snowmobile accident
The motorsport world has paid tribute to American Ken Block, a professional rally driver whose daring stunts caused an internet sensation after his death at the age of 55 in a snowmobile accident.
Block’s Hoonigan Racing team confirmed his death in a statement posted on Instagram on Monday.
“Ken was a visionary, a pioneer and an icon. And above all, a father and a husband. He will be sorely missed,” he said.
The accident happened in Wasatch County, Utah, and the sheriff’s office said Block was driving down a steep hill when the snowmobile flipped over and landed on him.
“He was pronounced dead at the scene from injuries sustained in the accident,” he said, adding that he was riding in a group but was alone when the accident happened.
Having started his rally career in 2005, Block was named Rally America Rookie of the Year. He competed in the World Rally Championship and won several rallycross medals at the X Games.
The American co-founded the sportswear company DC Shoes and produced the Gymkhana video series, which featured him driving on treacherous tracks and obstacle courses. The series has racked up millions of views on YouTube.
He also appeared on the BBC’s Top Gear, including a drifting and tire-burning sequence around London with actor Matt LeBlanc.
Mohammed Ben Sulayem, a former rally driver and president of the International Automobile Federation (FIA), said on Twitter that Block was “an inspiration to us all and a true gentleman of our sport”.
Jenson Button, the 2009 Formula 1 world champion, said he was in shock.
“Such a talent who did so much for our sport. He was a true visionary with his own unique style and infectious smile. Our sport has lost one of the best today but above all a great man,” he said. he said on Twitter.
Nine-time world rally champion Sebastien Loeb, who is currently competing in the Dakar Rally in Saudi Arabia, posted a photo with the words “RIP Legend”…Reuters