Ed Ordynski - Guest Speaker

Ed Ordynski - Guest Speaker

VSM are excited to announce Ed Ordynski as our 2nd guest speaker for our VSM Information & Ride Weekend. Ed is an Australian Rally Champion who also rides DR650's. He attended our last ride weekend and Vince was left intrigued with all that Ed has achieved in his life, so we thought we would try and get him to come back this year and share his experiences!

Read on to find out more about Ed Ordynski...

Ed Ordynski, Australian Rally Champion

Ed Ordynski began rallying in 1974 in a Toyota Corolla he bought for $200 while he was attending Flinders University in South Australia.  In 1975 he entered his first Australian Rally Championship event, finishing 14th overall and first in class. He began school-teaching in 1977 and spent most of his weekends pursuing rally driving until becoming South Australian Rally Champion in 1986, driving a Subaru RX Turbo.

In 1989 he became the first Australian to win at World Championship level when he took victory in Group N (the category for showroom production cars) in a privately entered Mitsubishi Galant VR4 at Perth's Rally Australia. With support from Pedders Suspension, he went on to win the Australian Rally Championship outright and contest Group N World Championship rallies in New Zealand, Finland, Sweden and Australia, taking nine wins in all. Ed is indeed best known for his amazing record in Group N - he has had eight Group N wins from eleven starts at Australia's round of the World Rally Championship, winning six consecutively from 1991 to 1996 - and has won the Australian Group N Rally Championship four times.  He became one of Mitsubishi’s longest-serving, factory drivers.

He has also competed in several Asia-Pacific countries; made sixteen trips to China as a race instructor; raced V8s at Bathurst and Sandown; in 12 Hour races at Eastern Creek and Bathurst with George Fury and Win Percy; and in 1995, in a two-car team with Peter Brock, won the Mobil 1 Round Australia Trial, a 20,000km event.

In 1998 Ed was awarded the prestigious, "Columnist-of-the-Year" at the Magazine of the Year Awards, for his motorsport articles in Fast Fours & Rotaries Magazine.  He rates this as one of his best wins alongside the special gold plate awarded by Mitsubishi Motors for six consecutive wins in their worldwide, "Driver-of-the-Year" award.

At the 2001 Telstra Rally Australia, Ordynski took one of his strongest World Championship Group N wins when he defeated both the 2001 World Champion, Gabriel Pozzo and 2000 Champion Manfred Stohl.

In early 2005, Ed retired from professional rally driving when Mitsubishi withdrew its factory Ralliart teams globally. However Ed soon found great demand for his services as an exceptional, energy-efficient driver.  In the 2009 Global Green Eco Challenge from Darwin to Adelaide, he won the SUV category with an amazing 5.1 litres/100km (56.5 mpg) from a Hyundai Santa Fe, a two-tonne 4WD.  Ed has also taken an annual role in the running of the Volkswagen Think Blue Eco Challenge.

Ed was the first Australian to road test a Tesla electric vehicle on Australian soil and took part in trialing the Mercedes Benz Hydrogen Fuel Cell vehicle.  Most recently he conducted an eco challenge for the launch of Mitsubishi’s Outlander plug-in, hybrid, electric vehicle and was Mitsubishi’s adviser on its participation with that vehicle in the Australasian Safari.
Now 60 years of age, Ed lives in South Australia with wife, Kathy on their 2.5 hectare Adelaide hills property.  He is Patron of the MG Club of South Australia having owned a 1972 MGB for many years.  His other ‘classic’ vehicles include, three Datsun 1600s, a Suzuki LJ80 4WD, and a Holden HG ute along with several motorcycles, having obtained his bike licence just four years ago. 

Although primarily known as a factory rally driver, Ed has also specialised in conducting promotional and training events within the automotive industry.  He has been an Event Consultant to the World Eco Challenge and Business Development Manager for Motorsports Training Australia.

Ed has been an adviser to the SA Motorsports Board; Competitor Adviser to the Australian Rally Commission; and Chairman of the Australian Rally Commission.  CAMS also appointed Ed to chair a number of investigations into fatalities in rallying.  In 2014, Ed was inducted into the Australian Rallying Hall of Fame by World Rally Champion, Ari Vatanen.

Within both Australia and overseas, Ed has coached many competitors including multiple winners of the Asia-Pacific Rally Championship; the Australian Rally Championship; the Japanese Dirt Trial Championship; the Indonesian, Thailand and Malaysian Rally Championships; the Thailand Rallycross Championship; the runner-up in the RAC Rally of the UK; the winner of the Classic Adelaide tarmac rally; and the state rally championship winners in NSW, Victoria, Tasmania, Queensland and South Australia.

Motorsport Highlights

  • 1st Group N, Rally Australia, World Rally Championship, 1989, '91, '92, '93, '94, '95, '96, 2001.
  • 1st Group N, Rally New Zealand, World Rally Championship, 1994.
  • Australian Group N Rally Champion, 1990, 1993, '94, '95.
  • Australian Rally Champion, outright, 1990, in a Group N car.
  • Winner, 1993 Esanda International Rally of Canberra.
  • Winner, 2002 Subaru International Rally of Canberra
  • Winner, 1995 Mobil 1 Round Australia Trial.
  • Winner, 1986 South Australian Rally Championship.
  • 2nd outright, Australian Rally Championship, 2003.
  • 9th outright, Sandown 500 V8 Touring Car Race, 1995.
  • 3rd outright, Rally of Thailand, 1994.
  • Winner, Mitsubishi Ralliart Driver of the Year, eight times.

Cars driven in Competition

  • Toyota Corolla KE10
  • Mini Deluxe
  • Mini Cooper
  • Ford Cortina Mk 1
  • Datsun 1200 Coupe
  • Mazda RX2
  • Datsun 1600
  • Subaru RX Turbo 4WD
  • Volvo 850 T5R
  • Holden Calibra 4x4 Turbo
  • Holden Commodore V8
  • Holden Commodore V6
  • Mitsubishi Galant VR4 RS
  • Mitsubishi Galant VR4 RS Evolution
  • Mitsubishi Mirage RS
  • Mitsubishi Lancer RS Evolution
  • Mitsubishi Lancer RS Evolution II
  • Mitsubishi Lancer RS Evolution III
  • Mitsubishi Lancer RS Evolution V
  • Mitsubishi Lancer RS Evolution VI
  • Mitsubishi Lancer RS Evolution VII
  • Subaru WRX STI Spec C
  • Toyota Corolla Sportivo Prototype
  • Hyundai Excel
  • Hyundai Santa Fe

VSM are excited to have Ed on board for our ride weekend on 23rd & 24th April, and Ed is looking forward to coming back to Inverell and being part of the event.

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