There’s a new Welsh rally star on the World Rally Championship scene and we’re not talking about Elfyn Evans; 21-year-old Osian Pryce stunned his fellow competitors to secure an overall top-20 position on Wales Rally GB.
Pryce had never driven a four-wheel drive car in anger heading in to this weeks final WRC round but managed to put in an impressive performance to gain the attention of teams and seasoned competitors.
With only 30 miles of shakedown running before the start of the rally Pryce and co-driver Dale Furniss were on the pace from the word go and running at the front of their class.
By the fourth stage of the event the pair were flying and took the stage victory, setting the fastest time for WRC2 and RC2 runners. By the end of the rally Pryce had wrestled the Ford Fiesta to 18th position overall.
M-Sport World Rally Team boss Malcolm Wilson was blown away with the young Welshman’s efforts “I have been very impressed with what Osian did. The times he was setting, certainly the times early in the rally, have really caught my eye. Given that he had so little knowledge of the car before the start, he’s done very, very well.”
Fellow Welshman Elfyn Evans added “Osian was mega impressive. His main competitor Jari Ketomaa knows the car inside out and for Osian to be anywhere near, let alone beating him, was fantastic. He’s just jumped in the car and got on with it. The times he has done have been mighty impressive.”
Pryce admitted that heading in to the Wales Rally GB weekend he didn’t even know if he was going to be taking part in the event, so to even start the rally was an achievement. “To do what we have done, I’m over the moon. It’s fantastic. A dream come true! We made some great times on the first day, that fastest time in Maesnant was awesome and a real highlight.
“Since then it has been a bit tougher running further down the field, the road was deteriorating and getting quite a bit more slippery the further back you got. But it doesn’t matter. What matters is that we are here, at the finish with a result from a rally which has been just incredible. I have loved every minute of driving this car and the job now is to make this result count for something as we move forward into next season.”