Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Australia graduate James Abela will contest the 2016 Porsche Carrera Cup Australia season with McElrea Racing.
The 17-year-old placed sixth in the 2015 GT3 Cup Challenge standings and claimed the Jim Richards Endurance Trophy in his debut Porsche season before moving to the Type 991 Carrera Cup car previously raced by Tony Walls for 2016.
“The car was amazing to drive, a little strange at first, but once I got my head around it, and the team was more confident, my times got faster and faster as the day went on,” said Abela told Speedcafe.com after a recent test of his new machinery.
“[The test] was all about learning the new car and getting my head around the changes from my 2011 [911 GT3 Cup] car to the car I will campaign in 2016.
“I’m very fortunate to have such an amazing team like McElrea Racing behind me who understand what it takes to win races. They showed how they developed my teammate Matt Campbell from GT3 Cup Challenge race winner to a Porsche Carrera Cup championship contender and that is really promising.”
Abela will follow the path of many drivers who used GT3 Cup Challenge as a pathway to Carrera Cup, including Michael Almond, Matt Campbell, Stephen Grove, Matt Kingsley, Roger Lago, Richard Muscat, Fraser Ross and Scott Taylor.