Hoonigan Racing Division’s Ken Block and Alex Gelsomino took to the stages of Rally America’s Susquehannock Trail Performance Rally in Pennsylvania this weekend and absolutely dominated the event, walking away with their first overall win of the season and bringing an end to the mechanical bad luck streak that had plagued them since the start of the year.
With the stages of STPR featuring a surface of hard packed clay and gravel, the roads are extremely fast, which suit Block’s driving style perfectly. Block and his Ford Fiesta HFHV got things started during Friday’s opening-day stages with a stage win right off the bat and from there he went on to win two more of the five stages that day as well.
Heading into Saturday’s stages with a commanding lead of well over a minute on second place, Block and Gelsomino continued their attack on the backroads of Pennslyvania, taking stage wins on SS6, SS7, SS8, SS9, SS13 and SS14, for a total of nine stage wins out of sixteen stages on the rally. Block most likely would have extended that number to eleven outright stage wins, but unfortunately, during SS14 he suffered a cracked exhaust manifold, which forced him to run with his engine in transit mode during the final two super specials of the rally. Despite running a more conservative engine setup, Block still managed to finish third fastest on the final super special of the evening.
“This event went really well for us,” said Block. “We’ve been plagued with some bad mechanical luck this season up to this point, so it feels really good to finally have some good luck on our side! It’s a shame that some of the other top competitors had mechanical issues on day one, but that’s how it goes. I absolutely love these stages here at STPR and they’re a lot of fun for me, so I’m stoked that we were able to come out here and bring home the win.”
Block’s win on Saturday at STPR marks the second time that he’s won the event outright. For his next round of competitive driving, Block will be returning to Global X Games in Munich, Germany, June 30th.