Marcos Ambrose, driver of the No. 59 STP Ford Fusion, was second fastest practice in Friday morning's practice at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve. Ambrose talks about returning to Montreal, racing in the rain and expectations for this weekend. ...
Marcos Ambrose, driver of the No. 59 STP Ford Fusion, was second fastest practice in Friday morning's practice at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve. Ambrose talks about returning to Montreal, racing in the rain and expectations for this weekend. Ambrose lapped the 13-turn track at a time of 102.853 seconds (94.819 mph).
TALK ABOUT RETURNING TO MONTREAL. "It's great to be back. Montreal is a wonderful city this time of year. At least the race is now and not in January when it's so cold. I forget about last year. It's gone and it's no point to bring up bad memories. We're just looking forward to this weekend. Hopefully, we're running well. The car in practice was good. We feel like we've got a good chance. I'm desperate to win a NASCAR race. I feel like this one of my good chances to get it done."
THE WAY YOU RAN LAST YEAR MUST GIVE YOU A LOT OF CONFIDENCE. "I know what to feel and what to expect and what I need from the car to last the fuel run and to keep everything consistent. I feel like our car is very consistent balanced. I have confidence because I know the track suits me and I know that the car is working well."
THERE'S A GOOD CHANCE OF RAIN TOMORROW FOR THE RACE. DO YOU THINK THAT WOULD CHANGE THINGS DRASTICALLY? "Depends on if NASCAR wants to run in the rain. Yeah, bring it on. We'll run rain or shine. I really feel like the race is going to be long tomorrow. There's going to be a lot of cautions. The weather is going to be unpredictable. It's going to create a lot of change in the outcome of the race, I'm sure."
HAVE YOU TALKED TO BORIS SINCE MEXICO? "We're both driving Fords, so we see each other from time to time. He's not overly friendly to me, so it's his choice to make the next move. I tried to clear the air after Mexico. I don't know owe him anything, I don't owe him more an apology more than I've already done. If he wants to talk or not, that's his choice. I've got no bad feelings. I'm looking forward to racing him hard on Saturday and hopefully one of us will put a Ford in victory lane."
HOW IS THE TRACK TODAY? "The track was in good condition. There was no issue at all. The track stood up well for us. There's some patches from last year obviously after the Formula One race, which gives us different grip. It's a just a slight change in the way we set the cars up. The track is in good condition."
ARE YOU GOING TO DO ANY NATIONWIDE SERIES RACES NEXT YEAR? "I don't know about Nationwide races. I think all our sponsors that we're currently with in the Nationwide Series have committed to go Cup racing. We've got a few irons in the fire on Nationwide deals for other drivers. I think as a group, we're going to field a really good team in the Nationwide Series. Whether I'm part of that or not, it's up to the sponsors and the team to decide that. But I would like to. If someone else could put me in their car too, they can give me a phone call. The more races I do, the better I'm gonna get."
WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT NASCAR PULLING OUT OF THE MEXICO RACE? "I've been there twice and I've seen the crowd drop both years. If the market wasn't there for it, I can understand not wanting to go back. It was fun to have three road course races on the calendar. It's good for us road ringers but it's NASCAR's choice to go where they want. They keep giving us money to race, so I'll keep turning up wherever the send us."
WHAT KIND OF AN AFFECT DO YOU THINK IT HAS ON THIS RACE? "I'm not sure, you'll have to ask the Canadians that. It's nice to have an international feel in the Nationwide Series. It's a point of difference from the championship. There's a couple of Canadian drivers that race now in the Nationwide Series. There's some crossover there and some merit to it. I like traveling, obviously. I like to get another stamp on my passport every now and then, which is good."
TALK ABOUT THE TIRES AND IF IT RAINS TOMORROW. "It's NASCAR's choice. It looks like it could be touch and go for some showers. I'm not sure if the weather tires would have the most grip I've ever since. I saw them in Mexico and the looked a little purple. NASCAR will do everything they can to get the race in. And it if rains, I'm happy to run. I'll run anything."
YOU'VE RACED IN THE RAIN BEFORE? "Yeah, I'm not sure if that's good or bad because I don't know what to expect. It's no fun running in the rain. The car slips around a lot. It's very treacherous. You can crash the car or hydroplane on the brakes and stuff. It will make it interesting for sure, if that happens."
YOU HAD A SOLID RUN IN THE CUP CAR LAST WEEK. YOU ALSO LED PART OF TODAY'S PRACTICE. DOES THAT HELP YOUR CONFIDENCE? "This weekend feels like a holiday because I had so much pressure last week to make the show and it was my first Cup start on an oval. I come here with only one event to worry about, plus it's a road race, plus the car is handling well. It feels like I'm just on cruise control."
CAN YOU TALK ABOUT YOUR FORD FUSION RACE CAR? "The car is good. We had a gearbox issue there the first practice. I'm worried about that. We want the gearbox to last and be durable for us and not be a weak link. So, that's a worry for me. But the car itself is handling really well. We've got good power here this weekend. We're getting of the corners well with our suspension package. I feel like we're in good shape."
-credit: ford racing