New GT Owner -- Second Time Around!


MR. 5 MPG

GT Owner
Jan 14, 2024
33
SoCal
Forgive me, fellow GT owners, for I have sinned.

I underwent an excruciatingly-long and mentally-horrific 14 year time period when I did not own a Ford GT.

Between 2009 and Dec 2023, I got distracted by several Porsches, Ferraris, Corvettes and a Lamborghini. That just compounded the sin.

Fortunately, I recently came to my senses and bought another GT. This action has absolved my sin of being GT-less, but required a severe penance of a couple hundred thousand additional greenbacks over what I paid for my first GT.

My History: I grew up in West Los Angeles during the 1960s/70s and was transfixed by fast cars and the racing scene. Beginning on my seventh birthday, my dad started taking me to races at Riverside, Lion's Drag Strip, OCIR, Ascot Park and Ontario Motor Speedway. We would even occasionally drop by Shelby's LAX facility on a Saturday to peek through the fence at the Cobras and Mustangs being transformed.

All of the above helped launch my automotive career. I've enjoyed 30+ years experience as car magazine editor, writer, photographer, track-test-driver and racer. The first freelance article I wrote was about my tire-smoking ride in a real Cobra 427. It was published in Popular Hot Rodding Magazine in 1981, thereby convincing me that my freshly-minted college business degree wouldn't be setting the career path for me after all. I was driven from my heart to become a car magazine editor & track-test driver.

Fortunately, Popular Hot Rodding soon hired me as Associate Editor (lowest rung on the editorial ladder) and over my five years there, eventually promoted me to Technical Director. Between then and when I was hired by Motor Trend as its Editor-in-Chief in 1994, I contributed words and photos (as a prolific freelancer) to most every car magazine on the newsstands.

I left Motor Trend in 2002 to create the first non-motorsports automotive show for ESPN. The result was the "Drive" TV series. I was the host, writer and track-test driver, and there was tire smoke in every episode.

My Ford GT "Inside Connections":
Back in the early 1980s, when I won the Shelby-Rolex Journalist Challenge Series, I became friends with Carroll Shelby (whom I've always referred to as "The Most Interesting Man in the World.") He hired me to be his PR Manager for the Dodge/Shelby products in 1988-89, and again for the 1992 Indy 500, when he drove the Dodge Viper Pace Car.

In 2003, Carroll told me off-the-record that he was working on a "new GT40" with Ford. My ears perked-up at that.

In 2004, Carroll arranged for me to drive one of the GT development cars at Ford Proving Grounds. Neil Hannemann (a friend from my Shelby days) was one of the project's lead engineers. The car blew my mind. I vowed then and there to own one.

In 2006, I tested a production GT for my "Drive" TV show. It's searchable on YouTube.

That cinched the hook. I soon bought a GT identical to the test car: 2006 Tungsten, 4-options. Unfortunately, I sold it in 2009 (amidst the recession) and have been regretting it ever since.

Fast-forward to today: I'm now 65 and have Stage IV Lung Cancer (despite never having smoked anything but tires in my life.) It recently hit me that my Bucket List items aren't going to wait for "someday" to achieve. So, I reordered my priorities and began blazing through The List at WOT! Next in line: Buying another GT.

The very next day, I found a 2006 Tungsten with 5200 miles on BJ Motors' website. What made me look beyond the large price tag was that it'd been modded exactly as I would've done with my own GT: Polished 3.3l Whipple blower, Accufab throttle body, JBA headers, exhaust, Stillen clutch, 3.90 gears, Ohlin adjustable coil-overs, rear bumper delete. Dynoed at 602hp at the wheels. Ran 210 mph at Mojave 1.5 Mile (with previous owner "GT44" at the wheel.)

Here's the link to the Dec 2023 listing: https://www.bjmotors.biz/2006-ford-gt-4-option-car-with-5k-miles-c-13920.htm

Needless to say, I bought it.

Now, with this stunning one-owner GT in my garage, next to my silver Kirkham Cobra 427, I'm whole again. Fully absolved of automotive sin, and with nothing left to do but lay down rubber and watch the speedometer needle twist past 200 mph. Over and over, and over again.

I'm thrilled to be a GT owner...the second time around! And, I'm looking forward to being an active part of this forum.
Van

C. Van Tune
 
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DakotaGT

GT Owner
Mark II Lifetime
Dec 9, 2012
1,697
Sioux Falls, South Dakota
Welcome back to the fold! That is quite an impressive resume, and I’ve enjoyed your work over the years. Many of us here with Shelby and Kirkham (and other) Cobras, too. Sorry to hear about the lung cancer diagnosis (history of radon exposure?) but I’m amazed at so many peoples’ experiences these days with long-term survival rates with advanced cancer diagnoses, what with modern immunotherapy and other advancements.

Anyway, great to hear you found your way back, and we’re all going to want to see some photos, of both of those babies!
 

Art138

GT Owner
Mark II Lifetime
Jan 4, 2011
629
Weston,FL
Congrats on your find! Waiting to hear more stories on your early exposure to the GT.
 

PeteK

GT Owner
Mark II Lifetime
Apr 18, 2014
2,285
Kalama, Free part of WA State
Welcome back! And let's hear some outrageous stories and lies about the fun shit you did.
 

Twturbo

GT Owner
Mark II Lifetime
Sep 28, 2022
85
Upland SoCal
Wow & great mod list on your new Gt ,hope to meet you around SoCal one of these days ,There's the Shelby bash at the Peterson tomorrow if the rain holds off !!
 

MR. 5 MPG

GT Owner
Jan 14, 2024
33
SoCal
Thanks for the warm welcome, everyone. Car stories and photos to come in the near future.

Twturbo, we already know each other from the SAAC Forum. I'm "Side-Oilers" on there. Figured I'd change it here, since it's not a Shelby site.

I can't make it tomorrow, but hoping for a sunny day for everyone going to The Pete.
Van

BTW: I recently commented on a SAAC post of yours, where you showed the photo of your FGT and Shelby GT500. I replied that those are great bookend cars, and made me regret selling my GT even more.
 
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nota4re

GT Owner
Mark IV Lifetime
Le Mans 2010 Supporter
Feb 15, 2006
4,193
What a post and what a story! Congrats and I hope that you will be writing follow-ups for the next 30 years... minimum!
 

MR. 5 MPG

GT Owner
Jan 14, 2024
33
SoCal
^^ Thanks! I hope so too...!!!

BTW: I just bought a pair of front compartment struts and a GT float charger from cooltech. The struts arrived yesterday, with a note that the $$ for the charger will be refunded. Do you know if those are backordered, or no longer available?
 
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2112

Blue/white 06'
Mark II Lifetime
Van! Welcome back! So looking forward to more reporting on tackling your priorities!
 
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MR. 5 MPG

GT Owner
Jan 14, 2024
33
SoCal
Van! Welcome back! So looking forward to more reporting on tackling your priorities!
Hi Michael.
I sent you a PM yesterday. My goal is to give it hell, and live life at WOT!
 
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2112

Blue/white 06'
Mark II Lifetime
I responded. Forgot to ask if you still have your GT500?
 

MR. 5 MPG

GT Owner
Jan 14, 2024
33
SoCal
I sold my '68 GT500KR fastback (aluminum 427 stroked to 468, 4-speed) about a year and half ago. I figured that would be a difficult car for my wife to get top dollar out of, so a preemptive strike by me would relieve her of that hassle. Sold it to a Ford collector in the midwest. Nice guy, about my age. It's a keeper for him.

I miss that car too. Hell, I miss most everything I've ever sold. (I guess that proves I bought the right cars in the first place...?)
 
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MR. 5 MPG

GT Owner
Jan 14, 2024
33
SoCal
I'm trying to figure out how to add photos, but (as I read on another recent thread) I don't yet have the icon that allows photos to be added, only URLs. (But, I was allowed to add my avatar photo, so ???)

I guess I have to wait until the moderator sees that I'm a paid member, and then give me that feature.
 
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fjpikul

GT Owner
Mark IV Lifetime
Le Mans 2010 Supporter
Jan 4, 2006
11,495
Belleville, IL
The operative word is "Owner." One of the mods must change your status.
 
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2112

Blue/white 06'
Mark II Lifetime
How many moderators are there?

@ChipBeck @dbk are the 2 I know of.
 
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bmoullet

GT Owner
Apr 19, 2006
76
New Smyrna Beach, Florida
Welcome back to the family. Never too late to jump back in. Best of luck with the new GT and for enjoying every day, one day at a time. Share your GT story as you go. Keep fighting the good fight.
 

roketman

GT Owner
Mark IV Lifetime
Oct 24, 2005
8,005
ma.
Your forgiven!
Welcome back home!
Loved the video!
Thanks for sharing
 
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steved57

GT Owner
Mark IV Lifetime
Le Mans 2010 Supporter
Mar 29, 2008
1,941
kilgore tx
Wow what an awesome and interesting post
Welcome Back
 
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THamonGT

GT
Mark IV Lifetime
Le Mans 2010 Supporter
Welcome Back to the Forum! Enjoyed your Post, keep ‘em coming! In This day and time we are all living one day at a time!
 
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