NASCAR

RPM staying with Ford a fourth year

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KANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP)

Richard Petty Motorsports and Ford Racing said Friday they will partner for a fourth consecutive season in 2013.

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RPM will also continue to lease its cars from Roush Fenway Racing and its engines from Roush Yates Engines.

''We're delighted Richard Petty Motorsports will continue to run Fords going forward,'' said Jamie Allison, director, Ford Racing. ''Richard's presence means so much to this sport, to the fans, and to us, and we are proud to have the King and RPM with Ford.''

RPM said it will continue fielding a Nationwide Series car next season for Michael Annett, who is ranked fifth in the series standings with 15 top-10 finishes this season.

But, the organization said it's still finalizing its 2013 Sprint Cup Series lineup.

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The team currently fields cars for Aric Almirola and Marcos Ambrose.

Almirola, hired during the offseason when AJ Allmendinger moved to Penske Racing, is 21st in points headed into Sunday's race at Kansas Speedway. Ambrose, in his second season with RPM, is 18th in the standings. He's won at Watkins Glen each of the last two years for the organization, and the Australian said he wants to be back with RPM next season.

''I can't see any reason why I wouldn't want to be part of Richard Petty Motorsports in 2013,'' Ambrose said. ''There are a lot of good things to look forward to. We have built a great team and have great partners with Ford and Roush with their engine program and also engineering support. I want to be in NASCAR. I want to be around and I want to drive for Richard Petty Motorsports.''

RPM has won two races in the Cup Series with Ford and one in the Nationwide Series since partnering with the manufacturer in 2010, and Ambrose has a long relationship with Ford dating back to the start of his racing career in 1996 in Australia.

''I have a lot of reasons to be loyal to the manufacturer,'' he said. ''They have been fantastic to me and build incredible cars all around the world. I am lucky enough to be representing them on the race track and I want to represent them more, obviously with success.''

Tagged: Marcos Ambrose

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