Pro rally driver Ken Block, who later became an internet sensation with his daring stunts behind the wheel, died aged 55 after a snowmobile accident, his team Hoonigan Racing said.
“It’s with our deepest regrets that we can confirm that Ken Block passed away in a snowmobile accident today,” Hoonigan said in a statement on posted to Instagram on Monday.
“Ken was a visionary, a pioneer and an icon. And most importantly, a father and husband. He will be incredibly missed.”
The accident occurred in Utah’s Wasatch County. The local Sheriff’s Office said that Block was riding on a steep slope when the snowmobile upended and landed on top of him.
“He was pronounced deceased at the scene from injuries sustained in the accident,” they said in a statement, adding that he was riding in a group but was alone when the accident occurred.
Having begun his rallying career in 2005, Block was named Rookie of the Year in the Rally America Championship. He competed in the World Rally Championship and won several rallycross medals at the X Games.
The American also co-founded sportswear company DC Shoes and produced the Gymkhana video series, which featured him driving on dangerous tracks and obstacle courses. The series racked up millions of views on YouTube.
In 2016 he appeared in an episode of the BBC’s rebooted Top Gear, driving around London with actor and host Matt LeBlanc. That appearance ended in controversy when it was revealed that Block and LeBlanc performed doughnuts, wheelspins and burnouts, leaving blackened tyre streaks up and down Whitehall in the vicinity of memorials including the Cenotaph.
The BBC later apologised and footage containing the Cenotaph was never aired.