DC's Ken Block and co-driver Alex Gelsomino have won Rally America’s Olympus Rally, having just come off of a win two weeks ago at Rally Défi in Canada. The win is their third North American rally win in as many entries this year. The duo kept their winning momentum going over the weekend by making sure to get out of the gates fast on Saturday’s starting stages and by making sure to keep taking time out of all of the competition as the day wore on.
“We really went out hard on those opening stages,” said Block “The plan was to try and get ahead of everyone else time-wise during the morning stages so that we’d be reseeded at the front of the pack for the night stages in an effort to try and stay out of the dust. It wasn’t easy, as the road conditions here were definitely extremely loose in many areas, but we managed to put down consistently fast stage times and then had some luck in padding out our lead when both David Higgins and Antoine L’Estage suffered punctures on the last stage of the morning.”
Saturday evening ushered in nighttime stages and extremely dusty conditions for everyone on the road after Block and Gelsomino, which cost those competitors significant amounts of time (Olympus Rally was forced to put racing on hold between the hours of 1 PM and 8 PM due to dry conditions in the local forests and fears of forest fires breaking out). However, they managed to successfully complete the evening stages and continue to build upon their lead, which brought them into Sunday morning’s final stage with a lead of 4 minutes and 39 seconds on 2nd place. After it was all said and done, the MWRT pair successfully cleared the final stage and secured their 1st place overall victory, Block’s first at Olympus.
“I’m extremely pleased with how Ken did this weekend,” said Team Manager Derek Dauncey. “Both Ken and Alex did an amazing job with their notes, pace and speed. They kept the car clean, took time out of the competition when they needed to and came away with the win.”
Block’s next competitive event is round five of the Global RallyCross Championship, taking place in Las Vegas, Nevada on Saturday, September 29th.