TOYOTA TIDBITS -- August 10 - 16, 2009 Here Are the Headlines: Road Course Race Rewind Balancing on the 'Bubble' Victory Elusive for Vickers at Michigan Ambrose One Awesome Aussie at The Glen Tundra Tally Before Bristol Track Tussle ROAD...
TOYOTA TIDBITS -- August 10 - 16, 2009
Here Are the Headlines:
Road Course Race Rewind
Balancing on the 'Bubble'
Victory Elusive for Vickers at Michigan
Ambrose One Awesome Aussie at The Glen
Tundra Tally Before Bristol Track Tussle
ROAD COURSE RACE REVIEW: Four Camry drivers earned top-10 finishes in Monday's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) race at New York's Watkins Glen International road course. Two Toyota drivers earned their best career finishes -- Marcos Ambrose (second) and Max Papis (eighth). Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) teammates Kyle Busch (fourth) and Denny Hamlin (10th) also earned top-10 finishes in the 90-lap race.
BUBBLE BALANCE: With only four races remaining to get into the 'Chase' for the Sprint Cup championship playoff, several Camry drivers find themselves balancing on the bubble of getting into the coveted top-12 spots in the Sprint Cup Series point standings. Hamlin is solidly fifth following Monday's 10th-place finish at Watkins Glen International, but Camry drivers Busch (13th), Brian Vickers (14th) and David Reutimann (16th) have four races left to put themselves in position to battle for the championship. Busch is currently 58 points out of the 12th-place position and Vickers (96 points) and Reutimann (155 points) are also trailing the 'Chase' cutoff.
BRIAN'S BESTS AT MICHIGAN: Vickers has earned some of the best finishes of his Sprint Cup career behind the wheel of the No. 83 Red Bull Camry at the two-mile Michigan International Speedway. Vickers captured the pole in this year's spring race, as well as the fall race last season -- his first pole since joining Red Bull in 2007. He has also scored top-10 finishes while behind the wheel of a Camry in three Sprint Cup races at Michigan -- seventh (Aug. 2008), fourth (June 2008) and eighth (Aug. 2007). In his 11 career Cup starts at Michigan, Vickers has one top-five and six top-10 finishes.
AWESOME AUSSIE: Ambrose earned his second consecutive win at Watkins Glen International in the NASCAR Nationwide Series (NNS) race Saturday afternoon. Ambrose started second in the JTG-Daugherty No. 47 Camry and led twice for 26 (of 82) laps. The Australian-native took the lead for the final time when he passed Kyle Busch with 19 laps to go and was able to hold on to the lead to earn his first victory in a Camry, as well as the 10th NNS win by a Toyota driver this season.
TOP-10 TOYOTAS: Camry drivers have managed to earn top-10 finishes over the past two years in the Nationwide Series race at Michigan, but a win on the two-mile oval remains elusive. In 2008, four Camrys earned top-10 finishes -- Vickers (second), Tony Stewart (third), Joey Logano (seventh) and Jason Leffler (eighth). In Toyota's first NNS race at the speedway in 2007, Camry drivers Vickers (sixth) and Todd Bodine (eighth) were able to score top-10 results.
TUNDRA TALLY: Five Tundra drivers are in the top-10 in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) point standings, with Mike Skinner's third-place spot in the standings the highest position for Toyota drivers. Other Tundra racers in the top-10 include Bodine (fourth), Brian Scott (fifth), David Starr (sixth) and Tayler Malsam (seventh). The NCWTS returns to action Wednesday, August 19, at the half -mile bullring of Bristol Motor Speedway where Busch will defend his 2008 race win driving a Billy Ballew Motorsports Tundra.
TOYOTA TRIVIA: Toyota's first victory in the upper levels of NASCAR competition came at Michigan International Speedway when Travis Kvapil crossed the finish line first in a Tundra in the NCWTS race in 2004.
-credit: toyota motorsports