AMBROSE DETERMINED FOR BUSCH SERIES SUCCESS AT WATKINS GLEN Marcos Ambrose is determined to make his next NASCAR Busch Series start his best yet as the Australian looks to capitalise on his sensational road course form in the Zippo 200 at the...
AMBROSE DETERMINED FOR BUSCH SERIES SUCCESS AT WATKINS GLEN
Marcos Ambrose is determined to make his next NASCAR Busch Series start his best yet as the Australian looks to capitalise on his sensational road course form in the Zippo 200 at the Watkins Glen International road course in Watkins Glen, New York this weekend.
Ambrose led more laps than any other driver in the Aussie Vineyards-backed #59 Kingsford Charcoal Ford Fusion at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Montreal, Canada last weekend until he was sensationally taken out by Robby Gordon with two laps remaining in one of the most controversial finishes to any NASCAR race this season.
Wood Brothers/JTG Racing has decided that the team will again focus their attention on the team's full-time #21 Cup entry, putting on hold plans to run a second Cup entry for Ambrose on the Watkins Glen road course. Ambrose and the Aussie Vineyards-backed #59 Kingsford Charcoal NASCAR Busch team will be out to continue the form that sees the rookie in a strong eighth place in the all-important NASCAR Busch Series overall standings (See Note Below).
Ambrose raced at the front of the field in Montreal, outpacing some of the finest road course drivers in NASCAR. The 30-year-old was on course for his debut NASCAR victory with two laps remaining when an incident with Robby Gordon removed him from contention for the win.
Despite being forced into a spin Ambrose recovered to finish seventh, claiming the WIX Filters Lap Leader Award, the Checkers/Rally's Double Drive-Thru Award, Featherlite Most Improved Driver Award and jumping into eighth in the points standings.
This weekend will be another chance for Ambrose to contend for his best NASCAR finish yet. Ambrose will use the same car, which was brand new for Montreal, this weekend in Watkins Glen, such was the pace of the Aussie Vineyards-backed #59 Kingsford Charcoal Ford Fusion.
Marcos Ambrose -- Aussie Vineyards-backed #59 Kingsford Charcoal Ford Fusion
"We are using the same car at Watkins Glen that we used in Montreal and it's one very, very good race car," said Ambrose.
"I'm really excited about getting back out there this weekend and we are hoping for another strong top 10 finish.
"I think we showed a lot at Montreal and had as good a pace as anybody. That we didn't take our first victory was not our own doing but the beauty of NASCAR is that when you race every weekend, you don't have much of a chance to look back because the next race is always around the corner.
"Watkins Glen, while still a road course, is a different style of race track so it will take some work to get the car to work for us. It will not be as easy as dropping it on the track and away we go, but we've showed we have a good road course package now and that we are one of the real contenders.
"It was always our plan to use our new road course car at Montreal and Watkins Glen if the car was not too damaged. The car took a little bit more of a beating than we would have liked, so we have sent another truck up from our shop in North Carolina to meet the car at Watkins Glen with some extra parts and panels.
"With a bit of work the car will be ready to go and then it's up to us to get it working and up the front.
"As bad as the ending was in Montreal, that race showed we mean business and that in a road course style of racing we can do great things.
"I really enjoy the style of racing the road courses bring and the Watkins Glen layout is another really good circuit.
"No doubt it will be another hard race but this team is more determined than ever after last weekend and I can assure everyone that the #59 Kingsford Charcoal Ford Fusion will be a car to watch this weekend."
AMBROSE NEXTEL CUP DEBUT WITH WOOD BROTHERS/JTG RACING ON HOLD
At the beginning of the season, Wood Brothers/JTG Racing announced its plans to enter Marcos Ambrose in both of the Nextel Cup road course races in 2007.
Several circumstances have delayed Ambrose's Cup debut and he will not be competing in Nextel Cup at Watkins Glen with Wood Brothers/JTG Racing this weekend, according to team co-owner, Tad Geschickter.
"We want to be totally prepared when we embark on Marcos' Cup career," said Geschickter.
"We have no doubts that he will succeed at the top level of our sport. The combination of our #21 Cup car fighting to regain a guaranteed starting position in points and the unforeseen complexities of the new 'Car of Tomorrow' introduction has forced us to rethink our earlier plans.
"Combine these factors with Marcos having a real opportunity to finish well inside the coveted top 10 in Busch Series points and we felt that stretching our resources to rush his Cup debut was the wrong thing to do at this time."
Ambrose fully supported the decision and is looking forward to making his Nextel Cup debut with Wood Brothers/JTG Racing in the future.
"There is no doubt that my goal is to drive in the Nextel Cup Series and it is what I am focused on doing in the future," said Ambrose.
"I want to make sure that we are well prepared when we have a go at it.
"I'm excited about the progress that this team is making with my Busch equipment and I agree that we need to focus our efforts on continuing to improve.
"When the team says we are ready to go Cup racing, I'll be there with my helmet on ready to go. In the meantime we want the Kingsford Charcoal Ford Fusion to finish as high in the points as possible and we will be doing everything we can to make that happen."
-credit: team australia