“I really wanted to bring this video back to the core roots of my earlier Gymkhana videos,” said Block. “The full city takeovers are a lot of fun, but we felt that 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. We also partnered with Microsoft’s Forza Horizons 3 videogame on this video, which allowed us to incorporate some insane tricks that actually pull inspiration from the game itself. It all worked out amazingly and I couldn’t be more stoked on how this video turned out.”
In addition to being presented by Hoonigan, Gymkhana NINE also ushers in a new partnership for Block with the Forza Horizons videogame franchise. Two tricks in the video that were inspired by the game itself include a helicopter suspending a brand-new 2017 Ford Raptor from the sky while Block does donuts around it as it spins wildly out of control, as well as a scene where Block drift jumps sideways in front of a moving train. Both of the Forza moments are incredibly high-risk and utilized all of Block’s skill to be pulled off successfully.
“By the way,” said Block. “This is probably common sense, but just so that we’re clear, please, please, please do not attempt to recreate any of the tricks you see me do in his video at home on your own. Especially trying to outrun a train. Attempting to outrun a train isn’t just stupid, it’s also illegal. So please, don’t do it! I do these in a closed course environment with full safety crews, stunt coordinators and a well thought out plan!”
In addition to the aforementioned “Forza moments” from the video, Block also ups the ante in Gymkhana NINE with one of his most outrageous maneuvers to-date: a literal cliffhanger where he exits a warehouse, throws his Ford Focus RS RX into an alley-oop around a telephone cable spool and then proceeds to hang the rear end—and rear wheels—right off of the edge of a shipping pier on Lake Erie.
“The moment where I’m hanging the rear of my car off of that shipping pier was definitely stressful,” said Block. “But, it’s something that we really wanted to do in real life since previously people have only seen something like that in a CGI-d BMW commercial [Block is referencing a BMW advertisement where a car is drifting around on top of an aircraft carrier deck, something that many casual observers thought to be real when in fact it was all CGI]. That’s the great thing about these videos, everything I do with the car, everything we capture on camera is all real, live action. We may do a few takes to get all of the angles covered or get timing more dialed, but at the end of the day it’s all actual driving, no CGI.”
To see Block and his Ford Focus RS RX put it all on the line and in action in Gymkhana NINE, click here.