Darlington: JTG Racing/Ambrose preview

Ambrose Deems Darlington to be a Place Like No Other DARLINGTON, S.C. (May 5, 2010) - - There is no place like Darlington Raceway according to Marcos Ambrose, who is coming off of his first top-10 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) finish of the...

Ambrose Deems Darlington to be a Place Like No Other

DARLINGTON, S.C. (May 5, 2010) - - There is no place like Darlington Raceway according to Marcos Ambrose, who is coming off of his first top-10 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) finish of the season. This weekend he looks to do more of the same as he pilots the No. 47 Kingsford Charcoal Toyota Camry this Mother's Day weekend in the Showtime Southern 500.

"Darlington Raceway is a place like no other and it's as intimidating and challenging as it gets," Ambrose said.

"You're winging it around the top and you've got no room for error. You've got a lot of speed and a lot of grip on the track. It punishes you if you don't drive it the right way. It's an amazing place. I think anyone that wants to run NASCAR and thinks they are any good, they've got to come here and prove themselves first because this is as tough as it gets."

As Kingsford Charcoal makes its third race day appearance this season to remind fans Racing Season is Grilling Season and Memorial Day is just around the corner, it's hard to believe Ambrose has only one NSCS start at Darlington Raceway. And, he admits he earned his Darlington stripe before finishing 33rd last May.

"I didn't really race last time because I was just trying to stay out of the way after hitting the wall," said Ambrose. "I qualified decent, but by lap five I snagged the wall coming off of Turn 2 and bent the rear end housing and the steering arm.

"What a nightmare," Ambrose continued. "I had to drive all night like that. It was the longest race of my life. Then David Ragan spun out and I ran into him and was back in the fence a second time. I hit the fence twice and still kept going. If I was going to wind the clock back, I wouldn't have been so aggressive when we started the race."

Ambrose was able to log some more laps at the 1.366-mile oval on March 9th during a Goodyear tire test along with Clint Bowyer and Elliott Sadler.

"I think it only took me a few laps to spin out," Ambrose laughed. "It was hard for me to get around the place. I'm glad I was able to participate in the test and log some more laps there. It's one of the toughest tracks on the circuit, but I'm a fan of the place and I love it."

In addition to being a fan of Darlington Raceway, Ambrose is a fan of night racing.

"I like night time racing and I really enjoy the feel," Ambrose said. "It feels faster with the lights. It just has a different sensation. It's neat because the crowd gets into it and by the time the race starts the fans are wound up and the boys are ready to race. I love these tracks we are hitting now because they are throwbacks. It's what it was like years ago. I feel privileged to be experiencing it."

Ambrose is also thankful for experiencing a ninth-place finish at Richmond International Raceway on Saturday. In the process, he learned something valuable.

"We were so excited to finish in the top-10 and at the same time I learned something," Ambrose said. "I learned no matter what was going on around me, to keep composure because leadership also comes from the seat. My lesson learned is to stay calm because if I do then everyone around me is going to stay calm. If I'm frustrated then the whole team feels it. I had a bit of transformation in my attitude last weekend and we brought home results.

"We ran in the top 15 the entire race and had a solid finish," Ambrose continued. "I'm really happy about our form. Getting our first top-10 helps get our season going. We felt good about it. Expectations are always high, but I think we're turning a corner."

Once Ambrose wraps up Saturday night in Darlington, he's taking his wife Sonja and his daughters Adelaide and Tabitha to Cavalia in Charlotte for Mother's Day. Cavalia features 60 4-legged artists in this eclectic cast that includes breeds from all over the world, such as, the Lusitano Horse, the Pure Spanish-Breed (P.R.E.), the Quarter Horse, the Appaloosa Horse, the Canadian Horse, the Criollo, the Belgian Horse, the Comtois, and the Oldenburg. There will be incredible performances of some 40 2-legged artists, including acrobats, aerialists, riders, musicians and dancers.

"We're really looking forward to seeing Cavalia for the first time under the white big top in Charlotte," Ambrose said. "It's a family friendly event and I know the girls will love it because of acrobatics, visual effects and especially the 60 magnificent horses. It's a great Mother's Day gift and you too can purchase tickets at www.cavalia.net. Cavalia is in town for the next few weeks. Be sure to catch it before it's gone."

-source: jtg racing

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About this article
Series NASCAR Sprint Cup
Drivers Marcos Ambrose , Clint Bowyer , David Ragan