Homestead: Marcos Ambrose race report

AMBROSE LOOKS TO 2009 SEASON AFTER HARD LUCK IN HOMESTEAD Marcos Ambrose is looking towards an exciting 2009 season in the top division of NASCAR after a tough day in the Ford 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Florida today. Ambrose was ...

AMBROSE LOOKS TO 2009 SEASON AFTER HARD LUCK IN HOMESTEAD

Marcos Ambrose is looking towards an exciting 2009 season in the top division of NASCAR after a tough day in the Ford 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Florida today.

Ambrose was looking to secure the #47 entry (formerly #00) of Michael Waltrip Racing in the top 35 in NASCAR Sprint Cup Series owner's points in today's race, a feat that would have guaranteed that entry in the first five races of next season.

However, it was a tough day for Ambrose, who was clipped by Reed Sorenson and sent into the wall on lap 168, just as the pace of his #47 Little Debbie Toyota Camry was beginning to improve as the sun went down and track conditions cooled.

The damage forced the Australian into the garage for lengthy repairs, resulting in Ambrose finishing in 42nd position, some 45 laps down.

The misfortune meant that Ambrose missed 35th in owner's points by a mere 13 points, the equivalent of five race positions, or three positions with five bonus points for leading a lap. Brian Vickers finished in 32nd position, lifting the #84 entry of Red Bull Racing back into the top 35 in owner's points.

Ambrose started 11 Sprint Cup events in 2008, with a best result of third on the Watkins Glen road course after started from the rear, with 18th place in Phoenix last weekend his best finish on an oval.

Next season Ambrose will run the full Sprint Cup schedule in the #47 Toyota Camry of JTG Daugherty Racing, who have entered into a technical alliance with Michael Waltrip Racing from next season, with primary race sponsorship shared among Little Debbie, Kingsford, Clorox and Bush's Beans.

Carl Edwards won today's Ford 400 ahead of Kevin Harvick and Jamie McMurray, while Jimmie Johnson clinched his third-consecutive Sprint Cup crown.

MARCOS AMBROSE:

"It was just a bad day and what happened was unfortunate and unnecessary," said Ambrose.

"Next season is looking really good for us. We've shown good pace and learned a lot from these last few races of the year and I feel like it's given us a head start for 2009.

"We've missed the top 35 in owner's points at the moment, but there is a lot going on in the Sprint Cup garage at the moment, so we'll have to see what it all looks like when Daytona is closer.

"It's just a shame that we ended a great season with a tough weekend. It was just a long day but I'm still very excited about next year."

-credit: ma/bam

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Michael Waltrip , Kevin Harvick , Jimmie Johnson , Jamie McMurray , Marcos Ambrose , Brian Vickers , Carl Edwards , Reed Sorenson
Teams Red Bull Racing , JTG Daugherty Racing , Michael Waltrip Racing