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(From Canberra Times)
Marcos Ambrose credits his father Ross as being the biggest influence in his life.
Ross Ambrose grew up in Launceston and became an auto- electrician.
He started a car yard in Devonport and held a British Motor Corporation franchise.
''He dabbled in motor racing in his late 20s, but then at 30, he shocked everyone by selling all the gear he could and moving to England to take up motor racing full-time,'' Ambrose said of his father.
However, Ross was broke within six months and knew he was not going to make it there as a driver.
He started Van Diemen with mechanic Ralph Firman and their first car rolled out of the factory in Norfolk, England in 1973.
Van Diemen is now the world's largest producer of racing cars, particularly Formula Fords.
In 1976, Ross sold his share in Van Diemen and returned to Tasmania.
''Dad completely shut the door on that period of his life once he came home, it was a closed book,'' Ambrose said.
It was …