The world’s first Hooning dynasty


Hoonigan announced last week that Lia Block, a drag racing prodigy and the daughter of Ken Block, had taken control of the Hoonicorn for the broadcaster’s second season of Hoonicorn vs. the World. While Lia was learning the basics of drag racing, drifting and rallying before her debut in the 1,400-horsepower Mustang, Ken spent his year driving Audi’s biggest rally cars. Both sat down with Road & Route to talk about their respective driving careers, the Formula 1 season 2021 and the most interesting cars they have ever driven:

Road & Route: Can you explain the current state of the Hoonicorn to me?

Ken Block: Wow, we weren’t that precise yet. Would you like to do that?

Lia block: No.

KB: Twin turbo V8 on methanol. Sequential transmission from SADEV with a new paddle shift system. American Force four-wheel drive on wheels. It’s a 68 notchback Mustang.

Courtesy of Hoonigan

F&T: It got this iconic status as the best car in the world Forza horizon Games similar to the old Pikes Peak Mitsubishi Escudo in Gran Turismo 2. Did you hear about it?

KB: That actually started the original concept of Hoonicorn vs the World. People took the car because it was so fast in the game and ran it against a couple of other cars that they thought were fast and it beat all. When they put the car in this game, I ran the tests in Microsoft’s Seattle offices and, while driving, I said that it doesn’t feel manic enough, it doesn’t feel crazy. They did it very quickly in the game and it feels a little more realistic. It’s very cool that it turned out to be all of this, and that’s why we did the first series.

F&T: Lia, have you been driving it for a few months now?

KB: She drove the whole two days before filming, and then we shot two and a half, maybe three days.

F&T: But did you prepare beforehand?

LB: We trained with coaches like Leah Pruett, Hank Iroz and Donkmaster for about a month.

F&T: How did it compare to the drag cars you trained with?

LB: It was way crazier. Much faster, just a monster of all cars.

F&T: You did a stage rally this year. Are you interested in the rally?

LB: I actually did the rally about a month ago after filming Hoonicorn vs the World 2. I rode the Oregon Trail and it was great fun until my engine blew up. I’m very interested and would like to do more.

F&T: Ken, you have spent some time in a number of Audi rally cars in Europe. How does the Group S car compare to modern rally cars?

KB: I drove an old S1 E2 and the group S. They’re amazing to drive and the S1 E2 is one of the cars that got me into the rally in the first place so it was really cool to do that. The cars themselves are fast, even the detuned S1 E2 that I drove was still fast. It was amazing to hear that engine, that five-cylinder scream. The handling of the S1 E2 was actually terrible. Group S was a bit better, but they’re 80s cars with mediocre suspension. It is what it is. I really enjoy driving it, but it’s hard to compare it to today’s modern cars.

F&T: How does it compare to your Quattro road build?

KB: The funny thing is, I haven’t really driven the car yet. I can drive it in two weeks. My schedule has been crazy the last few months, the car was ready just before SEMA and I’ve been on the road ever since. In two weeks I will finally be able to drive and test more Audis with the GT and the Quattro.

F&T: Did you ask to drive one of the LMP cars?

KB: I asked to drive a lot of things, but what we had time to drive was a completely different matter. I’d really like to drive one of the more modern DTM cars and one of the LMP cars would be great, but we only had that much time so we had to prioritize the things that are close to my heart: the rally cars and other original DTMs -Cars. At some point we’ll come back and drive some of the other stuff. Audi has such a rich history of building things that have had a lot of success, so they promised me that I would get to drive more of them with the new Dakar vehicle.

Hoonicorn

Courtesy of Hoonigan

F&T: What are the most interesting cars the two of you have driven?

KB: I would say the S1 E2 Quattro is the most interesting car I’ve ever driven. I owned an RS200 and it was fun to drive, but it was terribly uncomfortable for me as I’m 6’1. It’s just a very small interior space. I just haven’t done a lot of other historical stuff, I wish I would, but I don’t have a lot in my driving history.

LB: Probably a Formula Mazda. They don’t do them anymore and it’s such a cool little car. It was the most memorable for me, it was the best I have ever achieved, to drive a big car with the open wheel and drive fast over a long distance.

KB: She got the chance to take a test on the Utah Motorsports campus in a locally run Formula Mazda racing in the U.S. Championship, which was a great opportunity to race in an open bike on the big track. She really liked it, she keeps bugging me to go back and do a few more tests. We’ll see, maybe one day.

F&T: Are you interested in competing at a higher level of the Open Wheels?

LB: Certainly. I will take every opportunity I can. I love all forms of racing so if you want me to go fast I’ll do anything.

F&T: Do any of you watch a lot of races?

KB: Yes and no. Nitro rallycross and WRC are the most interesting things to us and we look at F1, but that’s about it.

F&T: What do you think of the new Nitro electric rallycross cars?

KB: They look pretty, but we haven’t really seen them driving yet, at least I haven’t. I’m excited to see what happens there in real driving in competition. I drove one of the previous Ford Fiesta Project E-cars, I drove for World Rallycross in the first Project E race, and I didn’t like it as much as the current supercar in this series. But that was an early development car, what they did with the nitro car is much more advanced and better. I would love to try it, I would like to see how they drive and how they race. I’m thrilled that Nitro is doing this, but I think the proof lies in the pudding. We’ll see how they do next year.

F&T: Do you have a prediction for the F1 champion?

KB: No. But we know Lewis, Lia actually worked with Lewis. We’d love to see Lewis win, but it would be interesting to see a new champion.

After the conversation, Lia added one more important thing about her experience filming Hoonicorn Vs. Die Welt 2:

LB: I was faster than my father’s top speed in the Hoonicorn.

This series will air on Hoonigan’s YouTube channel throughout the season.

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