A Birthday, a Dad, and a Shelby GT350

Great gift or terrible son?

My father turned 60-years-old, and as luck would have it, he and my mother decided to spend his birthday in California. To help him celebrate this momentous occasion, I was able to procure a 2016 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 to give him a birthday present he wouldn't forget.

Now, before you watch the video below, you must first understand that my dad has never been in a car with over 300 horsepower. He's also has never been in a car while it gets pushed down the canyon roads of Southern California. He is in all respects, a blank canvas in terms of reaction to this combination of car road and tarmac.

I chose to give him the ride of his life on Little Tujunga Canyon Road, a tight and technical 11-mile-long stretch of pavement with sheer cliffs and little to no runoff. It's also only a few minutes from my house and I could recite the turns by memory if asked. It was perfect for the ride I had in mind and the track-focused, 526 horsepower, GT3-slayer that is the Shelby GT350.

As we filmed the introduction, I could see both my parents getting more nervous about what would happen next. I did my best to alleviate those fears, but as soon as we got him strapped into the seat, I knew there would be some high-pitched squealing — just not from the stickier-than-molasses-on-a-cold-day Michelin Pilot Super Sport tires.

As we pulled into a turnabout at the end of the ride, I couldn't have asked for a better reaction from my dad. Hopefully, I gave him a good birthday present and wasn't a terrible son for putting him through a hot lap of Little Tujunga Canyon Road.

Happy birthday again, Dad. Thanks for letting me knock you around.

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