Kentucky: Marcos Ambrose preview

AMBROSE AIMS FOR CONSISTENCY IN KENTUCKY Fresh from capturing the attention of the NASCAR community last weekend with a third place finish in Kansas, Team Australia NASCAR Truck driver Marcos Ambrose has stated that it is consistency that is...

AMBROSE AIMS FOR CONSISTENCY IN KENTUCKY

Fresh from capturing the attention of the NASCAR community last weekend with a third place finish in Kansas, Team Australia NASCAR Truck driver Marcos Ambrose has stated that it is consistency that is his next goal.

The two-time Australian V8 Supercar Champion will face a track similar to Kansas this weekend for his 10th NASCAR start at the Kentucky Speedway in Fort Mitchell, Kentucky.

Kentucky Speedway is a 1.5 mile tri-oval, as is Kansas Speedway, the track where Ambrose achieved his best finish and the highest finish by a rookie this season with third on July 1. It was also a 1.5 mile oval that saw Ambrose qualify the Team Australia/Aussie Vineyards F-150 truck in third position on May 19.

But rather than get carried away, Ambrose and the Wood Brothers/JTG Racing crew are aiming for consistent finishes inside the top 10 for the next few races as the stated goal for the #20 Aussie Vineyards truck. While Ambrose's speed is now obvious, the Team Australia driver realises that he still has more to learn.

WHAT THEY HAD TO SAY --

MARCOS AMBROSE - #20 TEAM AUSTRALIA/AUSSIE VINEYARDS F-150

"I feel more comfortable with the trucks, I feel more comfortable with the people that I'm driving with," said Ambrose.

"We're not going to be in the top three every week. We're aiming for a top 10 if we can, and anything above that is a bonus this year."

"I started my first one-and-a-half mile oval at Charlotte and crashed on the fourth lap after qualifying third. We had to wind it back a little bit and regroup and just understand how to race these things. It's very hard to adapt. I've never driven on ovals. I've never driven stock cars. I've come from a road-race background, so it's been a very difficult transition and wasn't one we expected to be easy.

"We're still in the learning process of all that. The move from Australia, I was kind of a big fish in a pretty small pond and now I'm small fish in a huge ocean over here. I've really got to find my mark. I'm a pioneer, I guess, on any international level to come across here and try to make NASCAR stick."

GARY COGSWELL -- CREW CHIEF #20 TEAM AUSTRALIA/AUSSIE VINEYARDS F-150

"To say we're ahead of schedule is an understatement," said Cogswell.

"It's amazing just how fast Marcos has caught on to what these trucks need to be fast. He's always done a great job giving us information so we can make the truck better, and he's been doing that while he's trying to get used to all these new tracks."

CRAIG GORE -- TEAM AUSTRALIA

"It has been a pretty big week for Team Australia since Marcos's efforts last weekend," said Gore.

"The feedback to his efforts has been fantastic and there is no doubt that he has made a few people sit up and take notice in the US.

"We don't want to get too carried away, but it would be terrific if he could continue on from where he left off in Kentucky this weekend.

"It think Australian fans and the media have just been waiting for Marcos to turn the corner and he did just that in Kansas on Saturday night.

TIPS FOR AUSTRALIAN FANS There are several websites relating to the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series where you can follow Ambrose's progress.

The best three we have discovered so far are the official NASCAR.com site, truckseries.com and woodbrothersracing.com

You can register for Track Pass on the NASCAR site which will give you access to radio broadcasts, in-car audio and video of most races for a fee, but you will need a US credit card (so ring a mate!)

You can get a free lap-by-lap written commentary of the races on truckseries.com by going to the trackside area of the site. There are also pre and post race audio interviews.

AUSTRALIAN TIMES

Practice 1
Sat., July 8, 2006
5:15am - 6:20am EST

Rookie Practice
Sat., July 8, 2006
6:25am - 6:50am EST

Final Practice
Sat., July 8, 2006
9:00am - 10:00am EST

Qualifying
Sun., July 9, 2006
6:30am EST

Race -- 150 laps
Sun., July 9, 2006
10:15am EST

ABOUT KENTUCKY SPEEDWAY


Race Distance: 150 laps 225 miles (362.10km)
Track Length: 1.5 miles
Degree of Banking in Turns: 14 degrees
Degree of Banking on Straights: 8 degrees front, 4 degree back

-www.teamaustraliamotorsport.com

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About this article
Series NASCAR Truck
Drivers Marcos Ambrose