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Ambrose Outslugs Keselowski To Win At The Glen

Info Manager | , RacinToday.com Sunday, August 12 2012

Marcos Ambrose made it two straight at Watkins Glen International on Sunday. (RacinToday/HHP file photo by Alan Marler)

Marcos Ambrose passed Brad Keselowski for the lead on the final lap, held Keselowski off through the final two corners and went on to win Sunday’s Sprint Cup Series race at an oil-bathed Watkins Glen International road course.

The victory was the second straight for the Richard Petty Motorsport driver at WGI’s 2.45-mile/11-turn circuit and the second of his career.

Keselowski finished second and Jimmie Johnson, who took over the points lead from Hendrick Motorsports teammate Dale Earnhardt Jr., was third.

Kyle Busch had the lead and appeared to be headed for the victory on the final lap but lost grip in oil that had been laid down on the track. When he recovered, he was still in front but with Keselowski right behind.

Keselowski moved in, bumped Busch sideways from behind and took the lead.

Ambrose moved in on Keselowski over the final turns, bumped Keselowski out of the way and made the winning pass.

“I was the first one to slip in the oil and it was just getting worse and worse,” Ambrose said. “You could tell the car was staying out there because the oil was moving around the race track and you just take your chances. You’ve got to commit at that point in the race and it was great racing with Kyle and Brad. They’re the two best guys to race. It’s just awesome fun and that’s the way racing should be and we got the No. 9 Stanley Ford in Victory Lane.”

Clint Bowyer finished fourth and Sam Hornish Jr. was fifth.

Rounding out the top 10 were Greg Biffle, Busch, Matt Kenseth,, Regan Smith and Martin Truex Jr.

After the race, few drivers shared Ambrose’s assessment that racing on oil was fun. They took aim at NASCAR’s failure to throw a caution because of the oil which was on the track.

Among them was Jeff Gordon, who lost big points because his car spun out in the oil.

“To work that hard all day long, come all the way from way back all the way up into the top 10 and have it taken away because they don’t want to throw a caution it’s pretty disappointing,” Gordon said. “I jumped out there to the outside of Kenseth and I think he could see the oil because he just gave it to me. I went out there and there was just no grip just completely came around.

“I went to the outside and hit it (oil on the track) and just spun right out. I’m just really disappointed because we fought hard today to come back to get what was going to be a pretty nice finish. The thing is, I’m just disappointed at how hard we had to fight for the position. The points are going to be what the points are going to be. We can’t control what other people do. We can only control what we do. And today, we took back control when we got off, and we were coming. It’s just unfortunate that that gets taken away from you because NASCAR doesn’t want to end the race under yellow.”

“Those last two laps were just out of control with the oil down,” Johnson, Gordon’s Hendrick Motorsports teammate, said. “You are studying the road trying to see if you can see an oil trail and there really wasn’t a large visible one to dodge. But you could feel the oil on your tires and slipping and sliding and then guys are spinning all over. It was chaos, but I’m glad we got back to the finish line, finished third.”

Tony Stewart was running second with 19 laps to go and looking like a strong candidate to get the victory when he clipped the grass inside of Turn 11 and spun into the wall.

RACE RESULTS

1. (5) Marcos Ambrose, Ford, 90, $25,9558.

2. (4) Brad Keselowski, Dodge, 90, $187,180.

3. (3) Jimmie Johnson, Chevrolet, 90, $166,821.

4. (8) Clint Bowyer, Toyota, 90, $142,399.

5. (17) Sam Hornish Jr., Dodge, 90, $141,935.

6. (15) Greg Biffle, Ford, 90, $109,610.

7. (2) Kyle Busch, Toyota, 90, $140,968.

8. (24) Matt Kenseth, Ford, 90, $127,771.

9. (13) Regan Smith, Chevrolet, 90, $107,568.

10. (9) Martin Truex Jr., Toyota, 90, $108,424.

11. (6) Ryan Newman, Chevrolet, 90, $118,443.

12. (22) Paul Menard, Chevrolet, 90, $85,610.

13. (20) Kasey Kahne, Chevrolet, 90, $83,935.

14. (18) Carl Edwards, Ford, 90, $116,576.

15. (19) Kevin Harvick, Chevrolet, 90, $119,821.

16. (30) Casey Mears, Ford, 90, $89,093.

17. (21) Scott Speed, Ford, 90, $68,710.

18. (29) Aric Almirola, Ford, 90, $109,246.

19. (7) Tony Stewart, Chevrolet, 90, $121,260.

20. (34) David Gilliland, Ford, 90, $87,068.

21. (12) Jeff Gordon, Chevrolet, 90, $115,721.

22. (32) David Ragan, Ford, 90, $82,793.

23. (35) Landon Cassill, Toyota, 90, $97,155.

24. (42) Travis Kvapil, Toyota, 90, $93,082.

25. (25) Boris Said, Ford, 90, $78,835.

26. (39) Stephen Leicht, Chevrolet, 90, $79,560.

27. (26) Bobby Labonte, Toyota, 90, $77,735.

28. (16) Dale Earnhardt Jr., Chevrolet, 89, $77,485.

29. (36) Joe Nemechek, Toyota, 88, $66,310.

30. (28) Jeff Burton, Chevrolet, 84, $108,735.

31. (27) Kurt Busch, Chevrolet, 81, $78,010.

32. (14) Joey Logano, Toyota, 71, $76,285.

33. (1) Juan Pablo Montoya, Chevrolet, Accident, 63, $101,526.

34. (23) Denny Hamlin, Toyota, Engine, 57, $110,501.

35. (41) Jason Leffler, Toyota, Engine, 42, $65,360.

36. (31) Dave Blaney, Chevrolet, Suspension, 41, $65,185.

37. (11) Michael McDowell, Ford, Rear Gear, 30, $65,055.

38. (38) Josh Wise, Ford, Electrical, 25, $64,853.

39. (10) Jamie McMurray, Chevrolet, Accident, 24, $93,008.

40. (37) JJ Yeley, Chevrolet, Brakes, 15, $61,845.

41. (40) Chris Cook, Toyota, Brakes, 5, $61,680.

42. (43) Patrick Long, Toyota, Brakes, 2, $61,555.

43. (33) Brian Vickers, Toyota, Engine, 0, $61,930.

RACE STATISTICS

Average Speed of Race Winner: 98.145 mph.

Time of Race: 2 Hrs, 14 Mins, 48 Secs.

Margin of Victory: 0.571 Seconds.

Caution Flags: 4 for 13 laps.

Lead Changes: 10 among 5 drivers.

Lap Leaders: J. Montoya 0; Kyle Busch 1-26; J. Montoya 27; B. Keselowski 28-38; M. Ambrose 39-45; B. Keselowski 46-56; Kyle Busch 57-58; C. Edwards 59; B. Keselowski 60-74; Kyle Busch 75-89; M. Ambrose 90;.

Leaders Summary (Driver, Times Lead, Laps Led): Kyle Busch 3 times for 43 laps; B. Keselowski 3 times for 37 laps; M. Ambrose 2 times for 8 laps; C. Edwards 1 time for 1 lap; J. Montoya 1 time for 1 lap.

Top 12 in Points: J. Johnson – 777; G. Biffle – 776; M. Kenseth – 775; D. Earnhardt Jr. – 760; B. Keselowski – 733; M. Truex Jr. – 728; C. Bowyer – 719; T. Stewart – 716; K. Harvick – 710; D. Hamlin – 693; K. Kahne – 653; C. Edwards – 650.

Info Manager | , RacinToday.com Sunday, August 12 2012
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