FONTANA, Calif. (October 7, 2009) -- Before racing the No. 47 Little DebbieÂ® Toyota at Auto Club Speedway on Sunday, Marcos Ambrose and his team owner Tad Geschickter will take a detour to Costa Mesa, California to tour TRD, U.S.A. (Toyota Racing...
FONTANA, Calif. (October 7, 2009) -- Before racing the No. 47 Little Debbie® Toyota at Auto Club Speedway on Sunday, Marcos Ambrose and his team owner Tad Geschickter will take a detour to Costa Mesa, California to tour TRD, U.S.A. (Toyota Racing Development), which powers all of Toyota's American racing programs, including three NASCAR series, as well NHRA, Grand Am and USAC programs.
"I am going with Tad (Geschickter), David (Reutimann), Cal (Wells) and a few others out to Costa Mesa to TRD's facility as guests of Toyota to see where they build our engines," Ambrose said. "We are going to thank all of the employees for their hard work and also see how the engines are built. We are thanking the guys for given us great horsepower and reliability all season because we are running these things flat out -- 10,000 RPM every lap."
Ambrose has experienced a solid season and is planted firmly in the top-20 in points (17th) entering Auto Club Speedway. Last week he recorded his 13th top-15 finish by finishing 14th at Kansas Speedway. Now, he is ready to improve upon a 22nd-place finish he posted at Auto Club Speedway in February.
"I'm looking forward to racing at the two-mile D-shaped Auto Club Speedway because I think it has a similar feel to Kansas and whatever we were doing at Kansas will carry across reasonably in Fontana," Ambrose said. "I know it's another half-mile bigger, but the style of track for me is similar. The corners are a little flat and the entries have smooth transition in and off.
"I think at Kansas, guys with clean air on their nose ran well and you will see the same thing at California," Ambrose continued. "If you can get clean air on your nose and the car is set up to run clean air with loads spread the right way, you are going to pull away. It's the same with all forms of racing. Although, aero is less important with the Cup Series than say Formula One or Indy Car. The guys out front with clean air all run fast. The guys running 25th and 35th, they have no air on their nose at all and they quickly fall back and it spreads the field out."
The Australian driver also mentions some of the many differences between Kansas and Auto Club Speedway.
"There is less grip at Auto Club Speedway that you have to take into account and a different tire as well," Marcos said. "So, there's a lot of things that will change. I think what we've struggled with our team is that we haven't known what direction to head. We didn't know what we were looking for to make the car run fast. Now, we are starting to get there. We are going to apply the same principles to the setup that we used at California earlier this season."
Following his stop at TRD on Thursday, Ambrose will be sign autographs near the Little Debbie® and Kingsford displays at Auto Club Speedway from 6:10 p.m. to 8 p.m. Pacific at the Stater Bros. Racefest. Driver introductions for fans will take place on the main stage from 6:00pm -- 6:25pm.