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 straight 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."
It didn't for Busch, who led 43 laps.
"Kyle hit the oil," said Dave Rogers, crew chief of Busch's No. 18 Toyota. "The 47 broke. You can see him, he just went by smoking. He left oil down all over the track. Kyle hit the oil, and it allowed the 2 [Keselowski] to get to us."
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.
"Busch slipped up big in Turn 1," said Keselowski, who sustained damage to the front of his car. "There was nothing he could do. We all checked up, and Marcos was right on my bumper. We all just about spun out. We got to the inner loop, and again nothing but oil."
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.