BUSCH: Chicagoland: Marcos Ambrose race report

EARLY RACE INCIDENT HAMPERS AMBROSE AT CHICAGOLAND Team Australia driver Marcos Ambrose endured a tough day behind the wheel in the USG Durock 300 at Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Illinois today. Ambrose started the 200-lap race from the ...

EARLY RACE INCIDENT HAMPERS AMBROSE AT CHICAGOLAND

Team Australia driver Marcos Ambrose endured a tough day behind the wheel in the USG Durock 300 at Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Illinois today.

Ambrose started the 200-lap race from the outside of the 10th row in the Aussie Vineyards-backed #59 Kingsford Charcoal Ford Fusion after posting a time of 30.720 seconds around the 1.5-mile tri-oval during qualifying earlier in the day. The dual V8 Supercar Champion was the second fastest rookie in the 43-car field, which included 25 regular Nextel Cup drivers.

When Ambrose was exiting his pit bay during the first round of pit stops he made contact with Clint Bowyer causing damage to the right front corner on the Aussie Vineyards-backed #59 Kingsford Charcoal Ford Fusion.

With the Chicagoland Speedway producing some higher straight line speeds than Daytona and Talladega, at close to 200 mph, aerodynamics play an important role in the handling of the car.

Unfortunately for Ambrose the damage suffered in the pit lane incident resulted in a blown right front tyre which forced him to slide up into the outside wall and cause further damage to the right hand side of his car.

As a consequence Ambrose returned to the pit area to allow his crew to complete some repairs during which time he lost a handful of laps to the race leaders and effectively ended any chance of a good result.

Ambrose continued to push on and gain valuable experience during the remainder of the race to be classified with 37th place at the finish. He remains inside the top ten in the points standings and second in the chase for the Raybestos Rookie of the Year crown.

Kevin Harvick won today's USG Durock 300 at Chicagoland Speedway ahead of Matt Kenseth and Jeff Burton. Harvick is the first repeat winner from the seven NASCAR Busch Series races contested at the venue.

Ambrose will have his next race in at the Gateway 250 at Gateway International Raceway in St Louis next weekend.

Marcos Ambrose -- Aussie Vineyards-backed #59 Kingsford Charcoal Ford Fusion

"Today was a day which we just have to put behind us and look towards next week," said Ambrose.

"I was putting in some good lap times during the early running, comparable with the top 20 but brushed the wall at the wrong spot, right on an entry gate, which whacked the wheel alignment out making the car hard to drive.

"During the first pit stop I clipped Clint Bowyer exiting my pit box which bent the guard back onto the tyre and just on 1 ½ laps later the right front tyre blew sending me into the wall.

"Although the damage wasn't that major we lost a handful of laps while we made repairs, from there it was a case of going around and aiming to simply get to the end."

-credit: team australia

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About this article
Series NASCAR XFINITY
Drivers Jeff Burton , Matt Kenseth , Kevin Harvick , Marcos Ambrose , Clint Bowyer