Homestead: Marcos Ambrose race notes

AMBROSE HAS TOP 10 RESULT SLIP AWAY IN MIAMI Team Australia driver Marcos Ambrose has missed out on a top 10 result to finish his debut NASCAR season, coming home in 27th position in the Ford 200 today at Homestead-Miami Speedway in ...

AMBROSE HAS TOP 10 RESULT SLIP AWAY IN MIAMI

Team Australia driver Marcos Ambrose has missed out on a top 10 result to finish his debut NASCAR season, coming home in 27th position in the Ford 200 today at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Florida.

Ambrose had a tyre blow out on the #20 Team Australia/Aussie Vineyards Ford F-150 in the final stages of the race, most likely due to running over debree on the race track, ending any chances of a strong finish to the season for Australian star.

The Australian qualified 17th after topping rookie practice earlier in the day. Ambrose had a strong truck for the race, progressing up the order to be fifth after the first round of pit stops on lap 45.

Ambrose continued to run in the top 10, running in seventh after the second round of pit stops on lap 65, until clipping the wall coming off of Turn 4 on lap 80 while in a battle for position.

Ambrose continued on with only minor damage and still had a solid finish in his sights, but had a tyre blow in the late stages of the race, forcing an unscheduled pit stop and dropping him off the lead lap and down into 27th place. The result leaves Ambrose in thrid spot in the Raybestos Rookie of the Year standings.

Ambrose finishes the season in 21st position in the 2006 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series after missing the first three races of the season. In his rookie season Ambrose earned US$256,368 in 22 starts, which included two third place finishes, four top 10 finishes, one Budweiser Pole award, one Mobil 1 Command Performance award and one WIX Air Filter Lap Leader award.

Ford driver Mark Martin won today's Ford 200 ahead of Brendan Gaughan and fellow Ford driver Erik Darnell. Todd Bodine claimed the 2006 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Championship with 21st place in tonight's final event of the 25-race season.

WHAT THEY HAD TO SAY --

Marcos Ambrose -- #20 Team Australia/Aussie Vineyards Ford F-150

"In this sort of racing you are going to cut a tyre from time to time," said Ambrose.

"We've had a pretty good run this year with looking after our tyres. It looks like we must have run over some debree because there was a piece of metal in the tyre that has cut the tread.

"We were running three or four wide there in the top 10 for a lot of that race and it was pretty exciting.

"I clipped the wall there while we were battling for position inside the top 10. It pushed the guard in a bit but it wasn't too serious.

"I could feel something going wrong and then eventually the tyre went down. It was unfortunate because we had a strong truck.

"It was good to close the year out with a strong run, even if we didn't get the chance to finish it off there in the end. I've learned a lot and I'm proud of what I have achieved.

"This has been a huge year for me and my family and I have to really thank everyone who has been a part of this effort."

Craig Gore -- Team Australia Co-Owner

"It was an unfortunate way for Marcos to end the season but there is little doubt that he has done a hell of a job this season," said Gore.

"I don't think people back in Australia fully understand the magnitude of what Marcos has achieved in his first year of NASCAR competition.

"Only bigger and better things are ahead of Marcos, Aussie Vineyards and the whole Team Australia program.

"I'm sure he'll enjoy a bit of a break over Christmas and come out flying in 2007."

-credit: www.teamaustraliamotorsport.com

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About this article
Series NASCAR Truck
Drivers Marcos Ambrose , Brendan Gaughan , Erik Darnell , Mark Martin