The creative czars over at Monticello Motor Club are at it again. A month after a fresh dumping of snow was the impetus for a slideways track day that featured a vintage Jaguar E-Type, another storm was coming, providing the perfect backdrop to drift a Ford GT. So they did it, and this time they let a teenager drive America’s supercar.
“We wanted to up the ante,” Chris Szczypala, the club’s videographer and media coordinator, told Robb Report. “Ari [Straus, owner of Monticello Motor Club] recently had his personal Ford GT delivered, we knew another big snow storm was coming, and we’ve still got a few teen race seats to fill, so we mixed it all together.” The resulting video features the luckiest teen in the world, a 14-year-old named Andrew, hammering Straus’ yellow-and-black GT around the snowy track—quite expertly, we might add.
Andrew is a graduate of the six-day teen race camp Monticello offers, a $17,000 program that takes kids from driving novices to adroit track slayers. “Andrew lives for driving. He rented one of our BMW M240i cars and has spent plenty of time on our track. When he’s not on track, he’s just driving our access roads,” Szczypala shares.
As for the half-million-dollar Ford GT, Straus accepted delivery back in the fall and had Forgeline wheels and winter tires fitted to it in the last few weeks. The boss was shockingly cool with turning over his prized supercar to a teen. “We picked Andrew because we knew he would be respectful of the car,” Szcyzpala says, adding that track director and four-time rally champion Chris Duplessis was sitting in the right seat for some of the shoot, helping give Andrew directions. “Andrew had skid pad and donut experience from race camp, but drifting in the snow was new to him. He did great, and got the back end hung out all on his own. We didn’t have to speed up any of the video. What you see is really him going for it.”
While Straus was at the track when the short video was shot, he was off doing other work until the end of the shoot. “We’re shooting the final sequence, which has him sending it around the mushroom connector [part of the track], and Ari’s up in the flag tower, watching this teen put his car sideways,” Szcyzpala says. “He was impressed, and calm, but he did let us know that was probably enough for the day.”
Props to Szcyzpala and the Monticello crew for a killer concept, for Straus not being precious with his GT, and to Andrew, for being a total badass. (And for not binning it.)