After touring the world with its larger and larger bid budget Gymkhana series – and hitting the oriental city of Dubai last year – Ken Block has returned to the roots of Gymkhana with the ninth episode, titled Raw Industrial Playground.
The stark industrial environments of Buffalo, New York have been chosen as the settings for the latest installment. “I really wanted to bring Nine back to the core roots of my earlier Gymkhana videos, ” Block said. “The full city takeovers are a ton of fun, but we felt it was time to get back to the basics, especially with the new Ford Focus RS RX. We really wanted to let it shine and be the star in this video since it has so much useable power and control.” With 600 horsepower (448 kilowatts) and 660 pound-feet of torque (894 Newton meters) at the helm, the RX has been designed and built in the UK by World Rally Championship team M-Sport, already securing two wins in its first season of competition in the World Rallycross Championship.
The video uses the abandoned Central Terminal railway station and tours the industrial areas of the city, including warehouses and the waterfront – the latter being the setting of some of Block’s best stunts throughout the series. Block also took some ideas from its sponsor – Microsoft’s Forza Horizon 3: drifts in front of a moving train or donuts performed around a Ford Raptor that is hooked to a helicopter. “The great thing about these videos, everything I do with the car, everything we capture on camera is all real, live action,” Block added.