Darlington Raceway 500
• Marcos Ambrose started the race at Darlington (S.C.) Raceway from the 6th spot
• Ambrose finished the 370-lap NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race in the 13th position
• Unofficially, Ambrose sits in 22nd position in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver point standings
Race Summary: Marcos Ambrose started the event at Darlington Raceway from the sixth position and communicated to his crew early in the race that his biggest issue was that the front end of the Stanley Ford was hitting the ground. A yellow flag on Lap 36 enabled crew chief Todd Parrott to bring his car onto pit lane for adjustments that the team hoped would help the front end issues Ambrose was experiencing.
Ambrose lined up in 16th place for the restart and fell several positions as he battled a tight handling race car. Parrott made changes to the Stanley machine during several pit stops in the first 100 laps of the race, but made the most progress during a Lap 125 stop under yellow. Not long after that pit stop, Ambrose returned to the track and communicated to the Stanley team that the adjustments that had been made during that round were a big step in the right direction.
Ambrose wheeled his way into the top 12 by Lap 130 and continued his hunt for the front of the field, running as high as ninth just past the 200 -lap mark. Ambrose lost a bit of momentum after making slight contact with the No. 20 car at Lap 239, but continued unscathed and lined up for a subsequent restart at Lap 244 in the 16th position.
The final 30 laps of Saturday evening’s race were wild ones and the race continued into overtime. During a green-white-checkered flag finish, Ambrose and the No. 47 car, driven by Bobby Labonte, made contact on the backstretch, which resulted in some damage to the Stanley Ford. Ambrose gathered up the No. 9 machine and continued on, taking the checkered flag in 13th place.
Ambrose picked up one position in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver point standings and now holds down the 22nd position heading into the 11th race of the season at Dover (Del.) International Speedway next weekend.
Ambrose’s Post-Race Thoughts: “We just fought all night. We were digging and gauging all night. We’re disappointed with 13th, so I guess that’s a good thing. I’m proud of my Stanley team and we’ll take our licks here and move on. We just kept digging and fighting all night. We tried not to damage the car, and most of what we got was on the last lap, so we had a good night. We’ll learn from it and come back next year and be better.”