2007 Could Be Turnaround Year For Wood Bros.
Missing nearly a day and a half of testing during the first two days of the second session of NASCAR Jackson Hewitt Preseason Thunder at Daytona International Speedway didn’t seem to faze Jon Wood (No. 47 Clorox/Armor All/American Red Cross Ford).
Wood was battling flu-like symptoms last Sunday, the first day of the second test session, and was unable to participate. His new Wood Brothers/JTG Racing teammate Marcos Ambrose (No. 59 Kingsford Ford) shook down the No. 47 instead.
In better health Monday, Wood lost more time due to two rain delays that gobbled up four hours of testing. But not before he posted the day’s fastest time in the shortened afternoon drafting session (48.422 seconds/185.866 mph).
“It’s the same Daytona it’s always been, except for racing on the beach,” Wood said. “Daytona kind of foreshadows it (the remainder of the season) and it gives you a prediction of what you have to face in the upcoming races the first of the season.
“I do have a sense of optimism and nervous anticipation as well.”
Wood Brothers/JTG Racing is in its second full season as an organization following its merger one year ago. Many of the kinks have been worked out and stability is now the order of the day. Wood and Ambrose are learning about each other as teammates and Wood is excited to work with new crew chief Scott Zipadelli.
Wood finished 14th in the final standings last year while his teammate Stacy Compton was 16th. “I’m quite certain (2007 is) going to be a better year than a year ago,” Wood said. “(Zipadelli) is a huge wealth of knowledge. The guy comes from one of the top-notch teams in NASCAR and he’s done his homework and he’s ready to be a crew chief. Having Marcos Ambrose as a (new) teammate has got to help.
"The way we finished off 2005, we were very competitive. We started out the 2006 season the same way. I think that both the Wood Brothers side and the JTG side have (put forth) a tremendous effort. It's been a struggle, but our cars are getting better and better.”