BUSCH: Milwaukee: Marcos Ambrose race report

AMBROSE RISES TO SEVENTH IN BUSCH POINTS AFTER SOLID 15TH IN MILWAUKEE Marcos Ambrose has risen to seventh in the NASCAR Busch Series standings after a solid performance to finish 15th in the AT&T 250 at the Milwaukee Mile in Milwaukee, ...

AMBROSE RISES TO SEVENTH IN BUSCH POINTS AFTER SOLID 15TH IN MILWAUKEE

Marcos Ambrose has risen to seventh in the NASCAR Busch Series standings after a solid performance to finish 15th in the AT&T 250 at the Milwaukee Mile in Milwaukee, Wisconsin today.

Ambrose finished on the lead lap in the Aussie Vineyards-backed #59 Kingsford Charcoal Ford Fusion, also maintaining his second position in the Raybestos Rookie of the Year standings behind fellow Ford driver David Ragan, who was 12th in today's event.

Ambrose qualified 12th for the event earlier in the day and made a strong start to the race, but his car's handling was not ideal, forcing him to soldier on with understeer problems.

As the car became more 'tight', Ambrose gradually lost touch with the leaders but continued to run in the top 20. Despite losing a lap late in the race Ambrose vaulted back onto the lead lap when he was awarded a 'lucky dog' pass for running as the leading car a lap down at a late race caution.

Ambrose hung on for 15th place in the 250-lap event, salvaging a strong finish and a good collection of points from the event despite wrestling with his car over the closing stages.

Denny Hamlin and Aric Almirola won today's race ahead of Scott Wimmer and Jason Leffler.

In unusual circumstances race winner Hamlin, who also races full-time in the top-flight NASCAR Nextel Cup that is racing in Sonoma, California this weekend, jumped into his car at the first pit stop after relief driver Almirola qualified and started the race in the #20 car.

Hamlin travelled approximately 2000 miles from Sonoma to Milwaukee to pull 'double duty' and race both Busch and Cup events this weekend, but did not make the start of the race.

Hamlin then jumped into his car in a rare NASCAR driver change at the first pit stop and proceeded to win the race.

It was such logistical issues that saw Ambrose's Nextel Cup debut postponed this weekend so that the Australian could focus his full attention on maintaining his top 10 position in the NASCAR Busch Series in the Aussie Vineyards-backed #59 Kingsford Charcoal Ford Fusion.

Ambrose will be back in action next weekend in the Camping World 200 at New Hampshire International Speedway in Loudon, New Hampshire on June 30.

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

"Six months ago I would have been happy with a 15th place finish, but today I'm not," said Ambrose.

"We had a fairly ordinary handling car out there. I think we did as well as we could with it.

"I feel like I got the most out of what I had. I just have to get better at giving the crew better feedback in the races.

"The first part of the race wasn't too bad, but as the race went on, we just got very tight with understeer.

"It was a struggle, but we finished in the front half of the field, on the lead lap and got more points, so that's certainly a positive. We will now look forward to improvement for New Hampshire."

-credit: team australia

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About this article
Series NASCAR XFINITY
Drivers Jason Leffler , Marcos Ambrose , Scott Wimmer , David Ragan , Denny Hamlin , Aric Almirola