Things didn't go much better than last year when his first Escort burned to a crisp.
Ever get the feeling that whatever endeavor you're undertaking is somehow cursed, like it just wasn't meant to be? Well we can only imagine that's how Ken Block is feeling right about now, after blowing the engine on this, his second Ford Escort RS Cosworth.
In case you haven't been following the development, Block's team at Hoonigan Racing and his patrons at Ford Performance started working in 2017 on transforming a classic 1990s-era, Group A-spec Escort RS Cosworth into a modern rally machine. But the project hasn't exactly gone smoothly, to say the least.
Block had a full schedule of events planned for the Cossie, but didn't get past the first one: the 100-Acre Wood Rally in Missouri – an event which the Gymkhana master has won seven times. But his winning streak came to a fiery end at last year's running when Block crashed his new ride and burned it to the ground.
The team has since been working on a second version of the same, and set about running it again at the same event, which would not only serve as its competitive debut, but its first real test. And it didn't go well.
Block and his Cossie v2 made it through the first two stages and was running fourth overall when the engine blew out, with oil leaking into the engine compartment and a plume of smoke resulting.
Fortunately the rest of the car was spared. The team had even brought an extra engine just in case, but without knowing just what caused the problem, they opted not to use it. Instead they retired early and will have to undertake some more testing before running it again in the next event, set to take place in New Zealand in May.