Off the back of a successful first season in the Porsche Carrera Cup GB this year, the opportunity will see Oliphant gain more crucial knowledge and experience behind the wheel of a Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car around some of the most iconic race circuits in the region.
The Middle East campaign includes visits to current Formula One venues in Bahrain and Abu Dhabi, as well as a welcome return for Oliphant to the Dubai Autodrome, the scene of a superb class victory with Century Motorsport during the Hankook 24 Hours of Dubai back in January this year.
Oliphant will compete with engineering support from nine-time Porsche Carrera Cup GB champions Redline Racing, with whom the 26 year old raced to an impressive top four championship finish during his maiden Porsche campaign this year.
The eighth Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Middle East season kicks off with an official pre-season test at Bahrain International Circuit in the week leading up to the opening double-header meeting at the same venue on 17-19 November in support of the FIA World Endurance Championship.
The second outing sees the championship head to the Dubai Autodrome on 9-10 December, before returning after a Christmas break at the same circuit on 27-28 January and then making a visit to the Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi on 10-11 February.
Oliphant’s campaign will then come to a close with back-to-back meetings in Bahrain on 3-4 March and 14-16 April, with the latter providing the 2015 Michelin Ginetta GT4 Supercup champion with the opportunity to race in support of the 2017 Formula 1 Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix.
Tom Oliphant: “I’m really excited to be taking on this new challenge in the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Middle East. It looks like the championship is going to have a strong entry, so I’m looking forward to testing myself against the grid on some brilliant race circuits.
“The championship offers a great amount of track time for me to further learn the current Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car. I feel like I was just getting into the groove at the end of this season, so to be able to continue racing throughout the winter is perfect.
“While the focus for me is to gain more miles in the car, I’m hoping that my experience this year in the ultra-competitive Carrera Cup GB will put me in a good position to be challenging for some silverware across the twelve race season.
“We had a brilliant experience racing in Dubai at the start of this year, so I can’t wait to head back out there and also tackle Bahrain and Abu Dhabi for the first time. I’d like to thank my 2016 partners for their backing throughout the year and to my family for supporting me into the winter.”
Source. Simon Paice Media/\Photo. John Patterson