AMBROSE HEADS TO GRACELAND
Team Australia NASCAR Truck driver Marcos Ambrose will be aiming to continue his impressive results when he starts his 11th race in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series this weekend in Memphis, Tennessee.
This weekend's round will be the ninth straight weekend of truck series competition for the two-time Australian V8 Supercar Champion. Looking back upon those frantic nine weeks, Ambrose appreciates what he has achieved in such a short period of time, but also realises that he has much to learn.
Ambrose and the Team Australia/Aussie Vineyards #20 F-150 will be looking for a solid finish this weekend at Memphis Motorsports Park to keep the team's roll of form running into a much needed break after the Memphis round.
WHAT HE HAD TO SAY --
MARCOS AMBROSE - #20 TEAM AUSTRALIA/AUSSIE VINEYARDS F-150
"You have to be carefully aggressive," said Ambrose.
"In the first 10 races I've learned who I can race with. I've watched a lot of good drivers and paid attention. When you're a rookie and you're young, the natural reaction is to run as hard as you can on every lap.
"I've learned you still have to run hard, but not over the edge. There's a time and place for everything.
"It's amazing how far we've come. The racer inside all of us won't be satisfied until we win, but you have to do that in steps. We started off with a plan just to run laps. Then we concentrated on finishing races. Now we're in position to think about being competitive.
"We know we still have some things to learn and there probably will be some bumps down the road. But to see where we are now with a team that's capable of winning each week and where we started 11 races ago as a team that struggled just to run laps says a lot about this entire organisation. They've been real patient with me, and now it's all starting to make some sense."
MARCOS AMBROSE FAST FACTS
-- Ambrose has earned $114,608 in 10 starts this year
-- Born in Launceston, Tasmania
-- Ambrose won two consecutive V8 Supercar Series Championships in Australia in 2003 and 2004 for Ford
-- Will drive the No. 20 Ford F-150 for Wood Brothers/JTG Racing in 2006
-- Achieved the best finish for a rookie this year when he finished third at Kansas Speedway on July 1 in only his ninth NASCAR event
-- Became the first Australian to lead laps in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series
-- Is the first non-American driver to finish in the top five of a truck series event since Canadian Ron Fellows won on the Watkins Glen road course on June 26, 1999
-- Ambrose won his first Budweiser Pole in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series at Kentucky Speedway on July 8
-- This is the first time a Raybestos Rookie of the Year candidate has won the pole since November 2004 when David Reutimann captured the No. 1 starting position at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
-- Ambrose is the first foreign-born driver to win a series pole since June 26, 1999 when Ron Fellows of Canada qualified first at Watkins Glen International.
-- This is the first pole for the Wood Brothers/JTG Racing team and the first pole for crew chief Gary Cogswell.
-- Ambrose has now qualified in the top 10 for five of his 10 NASCAR starts to date
-- History was made on lap 13 in Kentucky when Ambrose and Mexico's Michel Jourdain Jr. became the first non-Americans to run one-two in a NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race