FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:::
MONSTER WORLD RALLY TEAM COMES AWAY FROM WRC MEXICO WITH A 9TH OVERALL FINISH AND A FIRST-EVER STAGE WIN.
March 12th, 2012, León, Mexico: Monster World Rally Team’s Ken Block—and for WRC Mexico, teammate Chris “Atko” Atkinson—took to the gravel stages of Rally Guanajuato Mexico for the team’s first international rally of the year and came away with a 9th overall finish for Block and a stage win for Atkinson during one of leg two’s super special stages—a first ever for the Monster World Rally Team.
“I’m stoked to have cracked the top ten and scored points here in Mexico,” said Block. “After having electrical issues last year, it felt great to come back, have the car run well and just focus on my driving. This is always a difficult rally and this year it got even more challenging with that 54 kilometer stage during the final leg—that stage was tough! I’m also glad to have had Atko here with us for the rally as well. He put down that blistering stage time on SS12 Friday night and landed MWRT it’s first ever stage win, which is awesome.”
While Block’s 9th overall finish was a high note for the team, things didn’t go as smoothly for teammate Atkinson. Demonstrating the ability to put down consistently quick top-ten stage times, Atko unfortunately suffered mechanical woes on legs two and three of the rally. After having an off post-SS16 due to a brake issue arising during the flying finish, Atko came back for Sunday’s leg three under SuperRally rules. However, 16.5 km into the brutal 54 km Guanajuatito stage—which claimed fellow Ford drivers Latvala and Novikov—Atko was forced to retire due to a broken front suspension. Despite the hardships, Atko enjoyed his time with the MWRT.
“We had some good moments race-wise out on stage,” said Atkinson. “But, we also had some mechanical issues that held us back. What’s been awesome though, is being a part of the Monster World Rally Team and Ken’s crew. We were able to set some great stage times in the Fiesta while still having a lot of fun. I hope we can sort out a deal to do more rallies with MWRT this year.”
Block’s next competitive event will take place May 28th in Charlotte, North Carolina, for the first round of the 2012 Global RallyCross Championship. Until then, follow the team at monsterworldrallyteam.com, facebook.com/KenBlockRacing and facebook.com/MonsterWorldRallyTeam.
About Ken Block: Ken Blockʼs rally career began in 2005. His skill and car control became quickly apparent and Block aptly nabbed Rookie of the Year in the Rally America Championship. Since then, Block has continued to race in the series, boasting a healthy ten overall wins, in addition to numerous podium appearances as well as X Games medals. In addition to his performance in the car, Block has been a driving force in shedding light on the sport within the United States. His keen branding and marketing acumen has allowed Block to achieve global fame as a rally driver through his wildly successful viral videos, which include his record-setting jump for the TV series Stunt Junkies, his scenes in the DC snowboard video Mtn.Lab 1.5 and spy footage of his Subaru TRAX STI project in action, along with his Gymkhana videos. Ad Age named his “Gymkhana TWO” the No. 4 Viral Video of 2009 and his “Gymkhana THREE; Part 2 Ultimate Playground; l’Autodrome” the No. 6 Viral Video of 2010. At the start of 2012, Gymkhana FOUR: The Hollywood Megamercial was named the top-shared viral ad of 2011 by Marketing Magazine Australia. In January 2010, he formed the Monster World Rally Team and signed with Ford to become the first American to campaign in the World Rally Championship, becoming only the second American to ever score points in the WRC during his inaugural 2010 season. Additionally, his signing with Ford included campaigning domestically in racing (Global RallyCross, X Games and Rally America), as well as continuing to do gymkhana. Block co-founded DC Shoes, a worldwide leader in performance skateboarding shoes and a renowned action sports brand.
About Monster World Rally Team: Created and assembled by Ken Block, the object of the Monster World Rally Team is to redefine the race-team archetype. The team is driven not only to win, but to also market motorsport through innovative, creative and interactive ways. The team is supported by Monster Energy, Ford Motor Company, DC Shoes, Pirelli Tires and the DiRT Showdown videogame.