Disappointing day for Ambrose

Marcos Ambrose, driver of the #9 Stanley Ford, and Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Drive to End Hunger Chevrolet, lead the field to start of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Sonoma on June 24, 2012 in Sonoma, California. (Photo by Jerry Markland/Getty Images for NASCAR)

SONOMA, Calif. — Marcos Ambrose’s roller-coaster weekend ended on a frustrating note. After winning the pole in Friday’s time trials, Ambrose didn’t have the handling or pace he needed in Sunday’s race.

Arguably the most talented road racer in the Cup series, Ambrose led the first 11 laps but fell back through the field after Jeff Gordon passed him for the top spot.

“We really missed it,” said Ambrose, who rallied to finish eighth but was bitterly disappointed with his run. “We missed it bad, and we did good to recover and get a top-10 out of it. We’ll take it and move on.

“We got the pole and had a lot of speed. We just missed it for the race. We were slow. It was just terrible. We had no speed in the car, and we paid the price.”

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