Watkins Glen International Race Results: Marcos Ambrose Prevails Through Weather and Drama to Win at the Glen

August 15, 2011 No Comments

Chris Graythen/Getty Images

After several setbacks and heartbreaking incidents, Marcos Ambrose earned his first career victory in Monday’s delayed race at Watkins Glen International.

Ambrose, the Australian who won back-to-back V8 Supercar championships in 2003 and 2004, passed Brad Keselowski and Kyle Busch on the final restart to win his first race in 105 Sprint Cup starts.

“I’ve sacrificed so much to get here and to finally win and be here in Victory Lane in the Cup Series is a dream come true,” said Ambrose. “I’ve traveled halfway around the world and dragged my kids and my wife with me. I kept telling them I was good, but until you can win in the Cup Series you can’t really put that stamp on it.”

Surprise Brickyard 400 winner Paul Menard was running in the 14th position with 4 to go when a cut tire sent him directly into the outside barrier, sparking a fire underneath his No. 27 Chevrolet and relegating him to a 32nd place finish. The extended cleanup caution pushed the race into overtime, forcing the one and only attempt at a green-white-checkered finish.

Busch had the lead on the restart with Ambrose starting second and Keselowski in third. Ambrose spun the tires on the restarting, allowing Busch and Keselowski to battle for first in turn one. Busch slid outside in turn one, pushing him back to third behind Keselowski and Ambrose. Despite Ambrose’s bad restart, he was able to glue himself to Keselowski’s rear bumper and slightly nudge him out of the way for the race lead.

As Ambrose stretched his lead and took the white flag, chaos unraveled behind him as drivers raced desperately to improve their positions. Contact between Boris Said and David Ragan ended in a terrifying wreck which also collected David Reutimann and Mark Martin.

Ragan was hooked and sent directly into an angled wall, demolishing his car and sending it back onto the track where he collided with Reutimann. The collision sent Reutimann’s car airborne and upside down, obliterating his Toyota Camry.

“This is one of the bigger hits I would say, but it’s part of the gig,” said Reutimann. “You sign up to do this stuff every once and a while and you’re going to hit something. As fast as we’re going, you hit stuff pretty hard. I’m good and will be ready for Michigan next week. I’m thinking where I hit would probably be a good place for SAFER barriers. So, maybe we should look at that next time we come back. Overall, I’m okay and ready to get out of here.”

Kurt Busch and Denny Hamlin were also involved in hard impacts, with each driver going head on into tire barriers on separate occasions after brake/tire failures.

Complete results from Monday’s race at Watkins Glen International:
1. Marcos Ambrose
2. Brad Keselowski
3. Kyle Busch
4. Martin Truex Jr.
5. Joey Logano
6. Kevin Harvick
7. Juan Pablo Montoya
8. A.J. Allmendinger
9. Jeff Burton
10. Jimmie Johnson
11. Clint Bowyer
12. Carl Edwards
13. Jeff Gordon
14. Matt Kenseth
15. Dale Earnhardt Jr.
16. Ryan Newman
17. Jamie McMurray
18. Brian Vickers
19. Bobby Labonte
20. Casey Mears
21. Andy Lally
22. Boris Said
23. Regan Smith
24. Robby Gordon
25. Mark Martin
26. Kasey Kahne
27. Tony Stewart
28. David Ragan
29. David Reutimann
30. Ron Fellows
31. Greg Biffle
32. Paul Menard
33. David Gilliland
34. Terry Labonte
35. Andrew Ranger
36. Denny Hamlin
37. T.J. Bell
38. Kurt Busch
39. Scott Speed
40. Joe Nemechek
41. Michael McDowell
42. J.J. Yeley
43. Mike Skinner

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