Tsuchiya SUPER GT team reveals refreshed 2023 line-up
Fan favourite SUPER GT squad Tsuchiya Engineering has announced it will continue to field its hand-crafted Toyota GR Supra in the GT300 class this season, also revealing a new driver line-up.
The Hoppy-sponsored #25 car will be driven by Toyota junior driver Seita Nonaka and Togo Suganami, who replaces Team Mach-bound Takamitsu Matsui.
It marks a return to full-time SUPER GT action for 27-year-old Suganami, who spent most of last year on the sidelines after losing his seat at the LEON Racing Mercedes team.
Team owner Takeshi Tsuchiya said he hopes for a major improvement in the outfit's second year of using its own self-built version of the GR Supra after Matsui and Nonaka scored just one point in 2022.
"If we don't meet the expectations of our supporters with results, we won't be able to survive as a team," said Tsuchiya. "This year we absolutely have to get results, and I really want to make it a season that will make our supporters happy.
"I want Matsui, who up to now has been our 'ace' driver, to grow as much as he can in his new environment [Team Mach], but we are determined to grow even more and achieve strong results.
"I want to give strict orders to Nonaka, who stays with us from last year, in order that he can step up to the GT500 class next season.
"Everyone in the team has their own theme to grow so we can meet everyone's expectations, and fight for our survival this season."
Suganami made his SUPER GT debut midway through the 2019 season with LEON, scoring his first win alongside Naoya Gamou in 2020 at Motegi, but was replaced after the 2021 campaign by Takuro Shinohara.
He mostly spent last season competing in Super Formula Lights for B-Max Racing, but he made one GT300 outing at Fuji for Saitama Toyopet Green Brave as a replacement for Hiroki Yoshida, who tested positive for COVID-19.
Nonaka meanwhile will continue to combine his GT300 campaign with another season in Super Formula Lights with Toyota flagship team TOM'S.
Yokohama continues in its long-standing role as tyre supplier for Tsuchiya.
Confirmed GT300 entries so far
FIA GT3 cars
#4 Goodsmile Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3 (Nobuteru Taniguchi/Tatsuya Kataoka)
#7 Team Studie BMW M4 GT3 (Seiji Ara/Bruno Spengler/Masataka Yanagida)
#10 Gainer Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 (Hironobu Yasuda/Riki Okusa)
#11 Gainer Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 (Ryuichiro Tomita/Keishi Ishikawa/Y. Shiotsu)
#18 Team UpGarage Honda NSX GT3 (Takashi Kobayashi/Shun Koide)
#56 Kondo Racing Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 (Joao Paulo de Oliveira/TBA)
#65 LEON Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3 (Naoya Gamou/Takuro Shinohara)
#96 K-tunes Racing Lexus RC F GT3 (Morio Nitta/Shinichi Takagi)
GTA-GT300, Mother Chassis cars
#5 Team Mach Toyota 86 MC (Yusuke Tomibayashi/Takamitsu Matsui)
#25 Tsuchiya Engineering Toyota GR Supra GT (Togo Suganami/Seita Nonaka)
#30 apr Toyota GR86 GT (Hiroaki Nagai/Manabu Orido/Y. Kamimura/R. Ogawa)
#31 apr Lexus LC500h GT (Koki Saga/Kazuto Kotaka/Yuki Nemoto)
#52 Saitama Toyopet GB Toyota GR Supra GT (Hiroki Yoshida/Kohta Kawaai)
#61 R&D Sport Subaru BRZ GT300 (Takuto Iguchi/Hideki Yamauchi)
How SUPER GT's 2023 GT300 field is shaping up
Ranking the best GT500 line-ups for the 2023 SUPER GT season
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