F4 runner-up to join Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge ranks

Ryan Suhle with the Porsche at Queensland Raceway

Ryan Suhle is set to step from open-wheelers to the Porsche Michelin GT3 Cup Challenge in 2019 with McElrea Racing.

Suhle was runner-up in this year’s CAMS Payce Australian Formula 4 Championship to AGI Sport team-mate Jayden Ojeda, finishing every race in the top four in his second year in the championship.

The Brisbane driver returned home from the final round of the season at Pukekohe on Monday and tested a 911 GT3 Cup Car, that which Matt Campbell won the 2016 Carrera Cup in, for the first time at Queensland Raceway on the following day.

“We’re looking to do GT3 Cup Challenge with McElrea Racing next year,” Suhle told Speedcafe.com.

“We haven’t signed the contract yet but we’re definitely doing it.”

“Their (McElrea) performance has been really outstanding in both the categories (Carrera Cup, GT3 Cup Challenge) recently but it’s good to have a team that’s that good of an operation close to you because it also means that you can finish school and just run down to the Gold Coast for the afternoon and do a bit on the sim to prepare for a track so that’s pretty convenient.”

The 16-year-old was drawn to the Porsche system due to the options it presents locally as well as overseas, in light of Campbell’s rise through the German marque’s ranks.

“I think that Supercars is definitely one of the end goals, but also the Porsche pathway is something that’s become a lot more recognised in Australia recently with Matt Campbell,” explained Suhle.

“That’s something that we’re also looking at, so it’s kind of hitting two birds with one stone, because if you do go the Kumho (V8 Touring Cars) and Super2 route, you’re somewhat locking in your main ambition as Supercars.

“You’ve got a lot more open pathways if you do go down the Porsche route.”

Suhle will get his second real world taste of the car next weekend when he drives at Challenge Bathurst.

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