Next-gen Ambrose impresses on debut
By Iwan Jones
Monday 27th February, 2023 - 1:20pm
Tabitha Ambrose has impressed on her circuit racing debut in the Hyundai Excel class at AWC Race Tasmania.
The daughter of two-time Supercars champion Marcos Ambrose and granddaughter of Van Diemen Formula Ford constructor and driver Ross Ambrose recorded a string of Top 10 results across four races at Symmons Plains Raceway.
She commenced the weekend with a ninth in Practice 1, qualifying 11th, before dropping back to 14th in Race 1.
It was all upwards from there, with 10th in Race 2, eighth in Race 3 before a weekend best of sixth in Race 4.
Her father Marcos, who was at the circuit in his role as Competition Director at Garry Rogers Motorsport – running Owen Kelly in the National Trans Am Series and Nic Carroll in the S5000 Australian Drivers’ Championship – was elated with her results over the weekend.
“I’m really proud of her – first time she’s ever really been in race condition,” Ambrose said.
“We’ve done some test days and things but in the deep end here at Race Tasmania, but I thought why not? I’m here.”
The 46-year-old paid tribute to Tim Shaw – the man behind Supercar driver Brodie Kostecki’s debut in the National Trans Am Series last year – who helped run the car at the opening round of the 2023 Shannons SpeedSeries.
“He stepped out of the Trans Am duties and he’s been a great help for us, got to thank him so much,” he added.
“All he’s doing for Tabitha, because he’s a great driver coach, he’s a great support network around us and he set the car up for me, so it’s easy days for me.”
She was not the only next-generation driver to enjoy success over the weekend, with Ben Grice (son of two-time Bathurst winner Allan Grice) sensationally qualifying on pole for the National Trans Am Series, which was clean-swept by James Moffat (son of four-time Australian Touring Car Championship winner Allan Moffat).
In the Gulf Western Oils Touring Car Masters, Steven Johnson (son of five-time Australian Touring Car Championship winner Dick Johnson) claimed two race victories, while Ryan Hansford (son of late motorcycle legend and 1993 Bathurst 1000 winner Gregg Hansford) picked up the Trophy Race victory.
Victorian driver Hugo Simpson recorded a clean-sweep of the Hyundai Excel races at AWC Race Tasmania.
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