|Ambrose has options|
Currently enmeshed in a “17 races in 17 weeks” run that will carry the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series through the 2015 season finale at Homestead Miami Speedway on Nov. 16, a handful of teams traveled directly from Indianapolis Motor Speedway to Watkins Glen International today, to test for next month’s NASCAR At The Glen.
One of those teams is Richard Petty Motorsports, working to secure both of its NASCAR Sprint Cup teams a berth in the 2014 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. RPM left the Brickyard yesterday after a 21st-place finish for driver Aric Almirola and a 22nd for teammate Marcos Ambrose, flying directly to the Watkins Glen road course for a two-day test session.
The goal of the test will be to collect information and give Ambrose and Almirola the best possible setup when they return for the race in two weeks. If Ambrose can win the event – and he is a leading candidate to do so – RPM will put two cars in the title Chase for the first time ever.
In addition to a brutal race and testing schedule, RPM’s No. 9 Ford team must maintain focused in the face of persistent reports that Ambrose could depart the team at season’s end.
The Aussie's future has been the subject of widespread speculation for weeks now, and multiple sources tell GodfatherMotorsports.com that Ambrose will in fact return to his native Australia at season's end to drive for a new Aussie V8 Supercar team fielded by veteran series owner Dick Johnson and new partner Roger Penske in 2015.
Ambrose is a two-time champion of the Aussie VB Supercar Series and Penske Racing president Tim Cindric confirmed recently that discussions have taken place about fielding a team with Johnson. Penske is currently building a number of new automobile and Western Star truck dealerships “down under,” but a spokesperson for Dick Johnson Racing said earlier this month that "there is nothing to report at the present time.”
RPM owner Richard Petty said last week at Indianapolis Motor Speedway that Ambrose “has been good for Richard Petty Motorsports,” adding, “we admire what he's been doing for us.” Petty said the decision on whether to stay in the U.S. or return to Australia is up to Ambrose.
In Petty’s words, “You'll have to ask him."
Ambrose has declined comment,
telling reporters at IMS, "If I had something to say, I'd already say it."