NASCAR racer Marcos Ambrose has admitted that he owes much of his such success since moving to the United States to his experience in the Australian V8 Supercar Championship Series.
Ambrose, a two-time winner of the V8 Supercar title, raced in eleven Sprint Cup races in 2008 alongside a full season in the Nationwide Series and will now move into the Sprint Cup on a full-time basis in 2009 with JTG Daugherty Racing.
Having returned to Australia to visit the penultimate V8 meeting of the season at Symmons Plains, Ambrose admitted that he had learned a number of lessons from his time in the series that had put him in a good position for his NASCAR adventure.
“The level here is high,” he said. “You don't win a Championship here unless you are really good. It taught me a great lesson that you need good people around you. Definitely I learned a lot here. Without winning a V8 Supercar Championship, I wouldn't have been able to go over there anyway.
“Even when I got there I wouldn't have lasted five minutes unless I really knew what I was doing. There's no doubt that what I learned here put me in good stead.”
Ambrose added that 2009 will be vital to his chances of forging a successful NASCAR career as he embarks on a first full year in the main game.
“I pinch myself that I have got this far,” he said. “I am proud of what I have achieved so far.
“Next year is make-or-break for me. I am in quality gear for the first time. I have paid my dues and I have had over 100 starts now so there are no excuses. I have got to get it done.”