Breaking news! Ambrose quits!
Marcos Ambrose, who had joined forces with Dick Johnson Racing as they amalgamate with Team Penske to take on the 2015 v8 Supercars championship has decided to step back from the lead driver role and allow Scott Pye to take his seat for the remainder of the season.
The explanation offered by Ambrose is that he feels he’s not up to grade to develop the DJR Team Penske Ford Falcon FG-X to a competitive package due to his lack of recent experience in the series, and that Pye, who was driving in the series full time last year has a better chance of improving the cars performance.
The current word is that Ambrose will take up the co-driver role for the endurance races later in the year but there’s a flurry of speculation throughout fans that we’re not getting the full story.
Claims abound that Ambrose has had to step aside for a multitude of other reasons, including:
- Triple 8 team principle Roland Dane, who is also Scott Pye’s manager, fighting to get Pye the drive over Ambrose with the threat of stealing Pye for the potential 4th 888 car to be campaigned next year after news broke that Shane Van Gisbergen will be driving a 3rd vehicle for the powerhouse team
- Ambrose’s father is having major health concerns
- Ambrose and his family have moved back from the US to Australia in the past few months and are struggling to get used to their new environment with Ambrose away regularly for race meetings
- Penske may have been unimpressed with Ambrose’s performance of 3 near last placings in the first three races at the Australian Grand Prix and a DNF with a big damage bill in the last.
- That the team is struggling to gel with new staff being shipped over from the US to work alongside the existing DJR staff who’ve become a part of Team DJR Penske
- That Ambrose is being pushed aside to allow Tim Cindric, the new American manager brought in to lead Team DJR Penske, to bring his son over to compete in the second DJR Penske car expected to be made available for the 2016 season
What a mess! Chaos and guess work all over the place.
Looks like we’ll have to waiting and see if the full story comes out later in the year.
In the meantime, Ambrose’s competitors appear to universally agree that he’s done a good job in the two rounds he’s raced so far this season. At Adelaide Ambrose out-qualified the other Fords in the field and made the top 10 shootout. He would go on to finish 12th in that race despite his team making a strategic error by putting too much fuel in his car during a pit stop.
Ambrose sits 12th in the championship standings and his competitors suggest he hasn’t given his comeback a fair chance. It’s hard to argue with that based on his results in the mere 2 rounds he has contested, both of which have been on street circuits.
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