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Posted: Tue Oct 17, 2006 4:12 pm 
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For the first time in his short NASCAR career Australian Marcos Ambrose will race on a speedway for the second time when the Team Australia driver races in the Kroger 200 this weekend in Martinsville, Virginia.

Ambrose made not only his first NASCAR start, but also his oval racing debut at the famous Martinsville Speedway on April 1 earlier this year, qualifying 20th and finishing 33rd after becoming the innocent victim of someone else’s incident.

Almost six months on Ambrose revisits the half-mile oval having announced earlier this month that he will continue to race with Wood Brothers/JTG Racing next season, moving up into the 2007 NASCAR Busch Series in the #59 Kingsford Charcoal Ford Fusion.

Despite traveling to America as a NASCAR rookie after two-consecutive championships with Ford in the Australian V8 Supercar Championship Series, Ambrose and the Team Australia crew have quickly comes to grips with the competitive NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series with a pole position and three top 10 finishes, including two third place results.

Ambrose is confident he will benefit from a previous race experience at the flat oval. While most of the field grew up on tight short tracks, Ambrose has no previous oval experience prior to 2006, ensuring the Tasmanian-born driver will take comfort in finally getting the opportunity to race in somewhat familiar surroundings.


Marcos Ambrose – #20 Team Australia/Aussie Vineyards Ford F-150

“When I first came over to NASCAR I thought it would be places like Martinsville that would suit me, but it has turned out to be the opposite,â€￾ said Ambrose.

“I’ve gone really well on the big, fast speedways. I feel I haven’t performed quite as well as I would have liked on the short tracks this season and Martinsville is the last chance for me to get a top 10 on a short track this year.

“Martinsville will be the first track I have run for the second time. I feel we were running reasonably well in the race there in April but couldn’t close it out. We got caught up in someone else’s accident.

“I’d really like a strong top 10 finish here this weekend and I think that a good result is a definite possibility. There wasn’t much we could do in April when the wreck happened in front of us other than qualify a bit better and run closer to the front, so that is a goal for this weekend.â€￾

2006 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Points – After Round 20
– Marcos Ambrose did not compete in the first three rounds of the championship.

1. Todd Bodine 3076, 2. Johnny Benson 2963, 3. David Reutimann 2821, 4. Ted Musgrave 2795, 5. Rick Crawford 22708, 6. Ron Hornaday Jr 2665, 7. David Starr 2664, 8. Terry Cook 2584, 9. Dennis Setzer 2577, 10. Mike Bliss 2574, 24. Marcos Ambrose 1691.

2006 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Raybestos Rookie of the Year Points – After Round 20
– Marcos Ambrose did not compete in the first three rounds of the championship.

1. Erik Darnell 176, 2. Chad McCumbee 135, 3. Aric Almirola 130, 4. Marcos Ambrose 125, 5. Bobby East 102, 6. Boston Reid 99, 7. Joey Miller 96, 8. Kerry Earnhardt 93, 9. Erin Crocker 89, 10. Kraig Kinser 78.

– Ambrose has earned US$202,683 in 17 starts this year
– Born in Launceston, Tasmania, Australia
– Ambrose won two consecutive V8 Supercar Series Championships in Australia in 2003 and 2004 for Ford
– Drives the No. 20 Ford F-150 for Wood Brothers/JTG Racing in 2006
– Achieved his best result when he finished third at Kansas Speedway on July 1 in only his ninth NASCAR event. Also finished third in Round 16 in Nashville, his 13th NASCAR event
– Ambrose is one of only two NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Raybestos Rookie of the Year contenders to score a top three finish this season
– Ambrose is the first Raybestos Rookie of the Year candidate to earn two top five finishes
– Ambrose is the only Raybestos Rookie to capture WIX Filters Lap Leader of the Race honours in the Craftsman Truck Series this season. Ambrose led twice for 49 laps to claim the honor in the Built Ford Tough 225 in Kentucky
– Became the first Australian to lead laps in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series
– Is the first non-American driver to finish in the top five of a NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series event since Canadian Ron Fellows won on the Watkins Glen road course on 26 June 1999
– Ambrose won his first Budweiser Pole in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series at Kentucky Speedway on July 8
– Ambrose is the first non-Amercian driver to win a NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series pole since 26 June 1999 when Ron Fellows of Canada qualified first at Watkins Glen International
– This was the first pole for the Wood Brothers/JTG Racing team and the first pole for crew chief Gary Cogswell
– Ambrose has now qualified in the top 10 for seven of his 16 NASCAR starts to date
– scored his third top 10 finish of his rookie season at Las Vegas Motor Speedway

There are several websites relating to the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series where you can follow Ambrose’s progress.

The best four we have discovered so far are the official site,, and

You can register for Track Pass on the NASCAR site, which will give you access to radio broadcasts, in-car audio and video of most races for a fee, but you will need a US credit card (so ring a mate!).

You can get a free lap-by-lap written commentary of the races on by going to the trackside area of the site. There are also pre and post race audio interviews.

There are two other websites that have radio coverage of NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series races, and

Practice 1
Friday 20 October 2006
9:00am – 10:00am ET
Rookie Practice
Friday 20 October 2006
10:10am – 10:40am ET
Final Practice
Friday 20 October 2006
10:55am – 11:55am ET
Friday 20 October 2006
5:00pm ET
Race – 200 laps
Saturday 21 October 2006
1:05pm ET

Practice 1
Friday 20 October 2006
11:00pm – 12:00am EST
Rookie Practice
Saturday 21 October 2006
12:10am – 12:40am EST
Final Practice
Saturday 21 October 2006
12:55am – 1:55am EST
Saturday 21 October 2006
7:00am EST
Race – 200 laps
Sunday 22 October 2006
3:05am EST

Location: Martinsville, Virginia
Race Distance: 2! 00 laps = 105.2 miles (169.3 km)
Track Length: 0.526 miles
Degree of Banking in Turns: 12 degrees
Degree of Banking in Straights: 0 degrees

Race Record: Jon Wood, 2003 (72.069mph/1hr 27min 35sec)
Qualifying Record: Rick Crawford, 2005 (95.966mph/19.732sec)
April 2006 Race Winner: David Starr
April 2006 Polesitter: Bobby Hamilton Jr



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Posted: Tue Oct 17, 2006 11:02 pm 
Getting Side Ways
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he already has a pretty good record. i wonder where he would've been on the rookie table if he did compete in the first 3 races. well done marcos.



eb v8: low loud and fast. just how a v8 should be. i guess the big question is, is it fast enough...

Posted: Wed Oct 18, 2006 7:58 am 
Getting Side Ways
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Ride: XR6 Turbo

Location: Taree
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Wish he was still in the V8s, not the same without the devil racer



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