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Monday, August 13, 2012 - Page updated at 09:00 p.m.
Marcos Ambrose slides to victory at Watkins Glen | Auto racing
By JOHN KEKIS
The Associated Press
WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. — Slipping and sliding around oil-spattered Watkins Glen International on the last lap and fighting for the lead, Marcos Ambrose and Brad Keselowski didn't know what lay around the next turn.
"It was absolutely chaos at the end," Ambrose said. "I had really burned off the brakes. I couldn't figure out where it (the oil) was coming from. It was just absolutely crazy at the end."
Ambrose finally passed Keselowski heading to the final turn in a stunning fender-banging duel to win the Sprint Cup race at Watkins Glen International for the second consecutive time.
The oil had been spewing from the No. 47 of Bobby Labonte and ruined the day for Kyle Busch, who seemingly held a commanding lead heading to the white flag of the Finger Lakes 355.
"In the end, nobody knew what was going on," said Richard Petty, owner of Ambrose's No. 9 Ford. "They were slipping and sliding off the racetrack. Marcos might have known a little bit about it, but the rest of us didn't. Marcos stayed with it all day. Everything fell our way."
Desperate for a win to move back into contention for the Chase for the Sprint Cup championship, Busch skidded sideways coming out of the first turn of the final lap. Keselowski's No. 2 Dodge caromed off the side of Busch heading uphill through the high-speed esses and Ambrose followed Keselowski through as Busch spun to the side.
Skidding around the 11-turn, 2.45-mile layout, Ambrose and Keselowski battled side by side nearly all the way around. Both even went into the grass in the inner loop at the top of the esses but kept charging.
Ambrose slipped again in turn 10, but Keselowski couldn't drive past. Neither gave ground, and Ambrose forged ahead on the final turn, another hard right-hander, and turned away Keselowski's final charge on the outside.
"I must have hit the oil one more time and he didn't," Keselowski said. "I thought I had him."
Last year, Ambrose beat Busch and Keselowski on a paint-trading, two-lap dash to the checkered flag.
Jimmie Johnson was third Sunday to gain the points lead by one over Greg Biffle of Vancouver, Wash., who was sixth.
Ryan Newman was 11th to move ahead of Jeff Gordon into the second wild card slot. Enumclaw's Kasey Kahne holds the other. Kahne was 13th.
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