COTD: Why Gymkhana Isn’t Done In One Take Edition

The constant snipe at Gymkhana is that it isn't done in one take; that you see tire marks on the road from past runs ruining the illusion. Today, Brian Scotto, Segway Guy and EIC at 0-60 Magazine explained why that is.

Our AMA for Scotto and Kenneth H. Blockenberger went surprisingly well, but the best part was when GR1M RACER : Wrong Most of the Time spoke for the Internet asking, "why can't you do things in one take?" Scotto replied.


This is a simple but good question that we hear often. It boils down to four things: camera coverage, tires, distances between location and the need for practice.

CAMERA COVERAGE: Most shots are done within 2-4 takes, a lot of times we want to reshoot because we don't like the shot, or that Ken did something different than the camera operator was expecting and lost the car in the frame. But even if the filmers nailed every shot, you would need 15x the crew and cameras and that is just cost prohibitive.

TIRES: No tire in the world would last for 6-8 minutes of intense hoonage.

LOCATIONS: As anyone will tell you who knows SF well, we jump from location to location for some of the shots, meaning there would be a lot of boring straight road transits if we didn't. Granted there is the option to build and design a course, but again, that would be bloody expensive and not as cool as using organic obstacles that KB has to figure out instead of engineer to work. Make sense?

PRACTICE: A lot of the stuff in these videos Ken had never tried before. You can't really practice a jump drift in a parking lot. Quite frankly, we had no idea how it was going to end up, and while I'm sure Chuck Norris would just go flat and suffer the consequences, some times a prudent 7/10s first attempt is needed for mere mortals. The misconception is the Ken is taking 10 runs cause he can't do it. The truth is the first run or two is a bit reserved so not only can he get a feel of the trick, the camera operators understand what he will be doing. Then the next takes is Ken being a perfectionist and wanting to not be 5 inches from a cone, but 2 inches.

Photo Credit: Ken Block


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