Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup: Ahmad aims for strong start in season-opener

The recent title victories of Omani teenager Al Faisal al Zubair in the regional racing series at the Formula One circuit in Sakhir, Bahrain, has put the spotlight on motor sports in the sultanate. 

And it's a sheer coincidence that days after Al Faisal's grand double, the nation's flag-bearer of motor sports, Ahmad al Harthy, is set to launch his 2017 campaign in the world-class Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup with the three-hour race at Monza in Italy on April 22-23.

Ahmad, who celebrates his tenth anniversary of motor racing this year, is 'delighted that young Omani racers are making a mark in motor sports'.

Competing for the re-branded Oman Racing, Ahmad and his teammate, reigning British GT Champion Jonny Adam, eye a strong start in the Pro-Am class in their Aston Martin V12 Vantage GT3 car at the world’s biggest and best GT championship.

A total of 53 GT3 cars will be in action at the famed Formula One circuit.

Seven months ago Ahmad and Oman Racing secured a career-best Blancpain Endurance Cup top-four championship finish and the 35 year old Muscat driver is determined to better the result this year, starting at the Italian cathedral of motor sport - Monza.

Ahmad and Adam's aim for an overall podium will be driven this season by Tom Ferrier's British team, TF Sport, whose engineering strength is certain to bolster the Aston Martin side.

Ahmad got a boost ahead of the curtain-raiser after a strong run during the official pre-season test at Paul Ricard in France last month.

“We’re looking forward to the first race meeting of the 2017 season. I’m really happy how things are developing with Jonny and the team,” said Ahmad.

“Everything feels great, the car is fantastic and everyone is working very well together.

“It’s always difficult to judge where everyone is during the pre-season, even after the official test, but we feel comfortable with our own package and confident we can have a strong start to the championship.

We want the first race to end well, obviously, and get as many points on the board as we can. It’s very important to make a good start to the season.”

Ahmad had made his debut at Monza in 2013, driving a Porsche 997 GT3R for his Blancpain debut and last year along with Adam and then teammate Devon Modell, the Oman Racing entry posted a strong top four Pro-Am finish.

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