Western Conference, B-Spec
Derrick Ambrose, of Vancouver, Wash., serves as a prime example of the SCCA’s prescribed Club Racing progression. In 2012, Ambrose went from having a novice permit to a national license in three months. Now, just more than a year later, he is a Western Conference B-Spec Champion. It goes to show that dedication and hard work still pay off.
The driver of the CorkSport Mazda Performance Mazda2 most likely had several memorable moments from his title-winning campaign, but Sunday’s race at Buttonwillow Raceway Park stood out as a highlight.
“There were 2 cars in the B-Spec class, myself in a Mazda2 and two Honda Fits from HPD,” Ambrose said. “One of the [Touring] 4 cars did not qualify so he started at the back of the pack. I knew the [T4] driver’s style, so at the green I knew he would go towards the inside of the first corner. I used him as a pick to put the P1 Fit behind me, to take the lead right at the start. I wasn’t able to hold off the Fit for the race, and had to settle for second, but it was a great moment.”
Ambrose was the most active of all drivers in the first-time national class, competing in six of eight events in 2013. He notched wins in three of those races, including two wins at Pacific Raceways and one at Portland International Raceway. At Buttonwillow, Ambrose brought home a pair of second-place finishes. He also compiled four pole positions over the past season.
While Ambrose had a mostly clean run throughout the year, he did have a few issues that he overcame during the season.
“Mazdaspeed was the last manufacturer to get the ECU flash completed,” Ambrose said. “So, for most of the season, I was down on power, compared to the other cars, which made some of the horsepower tracks a challenge.
“I also had one DNF due to a freak sensor failure at the last Majors event which kept me from getting a Super Sweep class win, which would have carried me to the Runoffs.”
Ambrose had some important individuals and organizations to thank for their part in his success.
“I want to thank CorkSport Mazda Performance, Joey Jordan Motorsports, Monarch Inspections, and my family for their support all season long,” Ambrose said. “I wouldn’t be where I am, now, without them.”