Living The Life – Ken Block: Co-Founder of DC Shoes and Pro Rally Racer
Name: KEN BLOCK
Date of birth: November 21, 1967
Residence: Rancho Santa Fe, California
Car: #43 Subaru Impreza WRX STI
After creating three successful skateboarding and snowboard entities: Eightball Clothing, Droors Clothing and Blunt Magazine, Ken Block co-founded DC Shoes in 1994 with partner Damon Way.
Damon convinced his pro skateboarding brother Danny Way and fellow skateboarder Colin McKay to defect from their shoe sponsors and put their names on the first two DC shoe models. Lacking a shoe design and designer, Ken jumped into the role.
Ken and Damon grew the business from a small operation, making and marketing performance skateboarding footwear, to one of the leading companies in the industry that is distributed throughout the world. DC was acquired by Quiksilver in May, 2004, making it part of a nearly $2 billion action sports family. Block now serves as Chief Brand Officer where he oversees the DC brand.
- Winner: 40 Under 40 Awards, Sports Business Journal 2005
- One of the most influential people (#17) in Sports Business Journal 2004
- Ad Age’s Marketing 50 in 2004
- One of the Fast 50 in Fast Company Magazine, 2004
RALLY CAR RACER
In 2005, Block’s first year of rallying, he was aptly named Rally America’s Rookie of the Year. He was then signed by the Subaru Rally Team USA in 2006.
- Silver Medal @ X Games 13 (2007)
- Bronze Medal @ X Games 12 (2006)
- 2005 Rally America Rookie of The Year
- 18 podiums and 7 Overall Rally Wins
- He successfully jumped his rally car 171 feet for the Discovery Channel’s popular “Stunt Junkies” show in 2006
He’s been a skateboarder since he was 7, a motocross rider and racer since age 12, and a snowboarder since age 20. He even moved to Colorado to be a snowboard bum. Ken still loves to snowboard and has a home in Utah that features it’s own private snowboard park called the DC Mountain Lab.
Ken looks up to athletes that work hard and put their whole heart into what they do. These athletes include: Danny Way, Ricky Carmichael, Michael Jordan, and Petter Solberg
Gymkhana events are time/speed events in an automobile. There can be obstacles such as cones, tires, and barrels. The driver is expected to maneuver through the predetermined “track” performing many different driving techniques. What separates gymkhana from your traditional autocross event is that in gymkhana drivers are required to perform reversals, 180 degree spins, 360 degree spins, parking boxes, figure 8s and other advanced skills. Also drifting is encouraged where helpful/necessary. You can consider any event a Gymkhana which has a starting point, a finish line and some sort of “obstacle” to get through, around, or by, and is timed.
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