Oman’s Al Harthy Aiming For More Wins On Croft Return
By staff - Tue Jun 19, 8:43 am
Oman Air Racing Team driver Ahmad Al Harthy arrives at Croft in North Yorkshire this weekend, 23rd/24th June, aiming to continue his unbroken run of Pro-Am 1 podium finishes and to also add to his tally of four class wins during rounds nine and 10 of the Porsche Carrera Cup GB Championship.
Going into the fifth event of the campaign, which will signal the end of the first half of the season, the Muscat racer holds a 32-point lead at the top of the Pro-Am 1 standings and is determined to try, at the very least, to maintain that gap.
At Oulton Park Island Circuit just over a week ago, 30-year-old Ahmad produced one of the drives of the season in round eight to keep his 100 per cent podium record for 2012 intact with a sensational performance from the back of the grid.
Carving his way through the order from last place – as a result of choosing to run new tyres rather than his original allocation which were damaged in qualifying – he scorched through the field to end the encounter a mere 0.1 seconds shy of his fifth Pro-Am 1 victory of the year. Earlier in the day, Ahmad was third in class from fourth on the grid.
“After the way qualifying went for us at Oulton we weren’t sure if we’d be on the podium”, said the Oman Air Oman Ministry of Sports Affairs, Oman Ministry of Tourism, Nawras, National Bank of Oman and Muscat Eye Laser Centre-supported driver, “So to keep the run of podiums going, and to even increase our lead in the championship, was beyond what we thought would be possible.
“The team gave me a great car at Oulton and I really enjoyed the second race. Starting at the back we had no idea how far up the points we could climb but to be fighting for the Pro-Am 1 win at the end was a fantastic feeling and showed how strong our pace was.”
The weekend’s action at Croft’s fast 2.1-mile circuit will mark Ahmad’s first appearance there since 2010 – last year’s annual visit to the North East by the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship race package clashed with the Porsche Carrera World Cup at Germany’s Nürburgring-Nordschleife.
Therefore, Ahmad will be aiming to make the most of the two Croft practice sessions this Friday, 22nd June, to get back up-to-speed at a circuit where he is yet to claim a podium finish in Porsche Carrera Cup GB having just missed out during his maiden season in the category back in 2010.
“I’m really looking forward to going back to Croft, it’s a great track, very fast in places, and I really do think we can challenge for more wins there”, he added, “As has been the case all year, our main aim is to keep our strong lead in the points – but I’m intending to try and fight for the victories as well!”
Following pre-event testing on Friday, qualifying for rounds nine and 10 of the Porsche Carrera Cup GB Championship will take place at 13.30 on Saturday, 23rd June, ahead of the first race at 16.15. On Sunday, 24th June, race two – which will be screened live in the UK on ITV4, ITV4 HD