QOTD: At What Age Should You Let Your Kid Drive?
Max Verstappen. He’s the youngest competitor to ever pilot a Formula 1 car around a track. At the age of 17, the young Dutchman would likely have a restricted driving licence in many countries. But, here he is, racing wheel to wheel with World Champions as he waves his FIA Super Licence in the air.
Sexist comments about women being too scared to drive in competitive racing aside, Verstappen has made a phenomenal debut in the top rung of motorsports. That should be expected. He’s been driving karts since the age of four and a half. He’s also likely been driving road cars long before he could do so legally, something a lot of us car folk probably have in common.
When I was just a sprout, my father would sometimes take me with him to work. This included long drives down logging roads to check out a stand of trees before cultivation. Being in the forestry industry takes you far away from the nearest threat of flashing cherries. It was here, at the age of eight, I was finally allowed to drive a life-sized car without sitting on someone’s lap.
That very brief experience was limited to learning how to operate a clutch without stalling, shift without grinding and also keep my eyes on the road while simultaneously performing all these other new actions my brain was attempting to comprehend. It also planted the seed for my love of driving. (Thanks Dad.)
But, if a parent did that nowadays, they’d likely get a stern talking to from the police by way of the local Helicopter Mom Association (a.k.a. PTA). Hell, you can’t even leave your child in a park unattended anymore because God forbid someone will repeatedly stab Timmy with a prison shank carved out of iPods or some other such nonsense. Put Timmy behind the wheel? Nuclear winter.
And yet I’m still here.
With that in mind, what age should a tyke be put behind the wheel – you know, for safety?
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