It is often said that a person's reputation is as important - if not more so - than their achievements.
The comments below are by people who have had a role in, or observed with interest, Daniel's motorsport career. These are opinions of him not only as a racing driver, but also as a person.
"During 2011, Daniel Erickson returned to our factory Formula Ford racing team to assist with development driving and mentor our younger drivers. Although he hadn't driven an Australian specification Formula Ford since the end of 2008, he was quickly on the pace, running in the lead pack and winning a race at Phillip Island.
Daniel's feedback was able to give us a clear direction with chassis development. His positive nature and strong sense of teamwork made him an excellent mentor to the other drivers, resulting in accelerated development of their performances.
We were delighted to have Daniel back in our team. He has the talent, the presentation and the temperament to succeed as a professional motor racing driver and we wish him every success for the future."
Director, Borland Racing Developments Pty Ltd
39 Industrial Drive,
Ph: (03) 9590-5236
As a race driver for 35 years, the last 25 of which have been as a professional, I believe that Daniel Erickson has great ability as a race driver. His performances in British Formula Ford racing during 2009 proved to me that he has lots of natural talent.
I also saw evidence of this last February at the Bathurst 12-hour production touring car race. Daniel was very impressive in his first drive of a 'closed' (ie. touring) car, and driving for the first time at Mt Panorama, one of the most challenging racetracks in the world.
However, Daniel is much more than a talented race driver. He is savvy about the complex world of motorsport, learns and adapts quickly in new environments, and has a warm and engaging personality. Many budding race drivers lack these qualities, which are essential for anyone wanting to make a career out of race driving.
Daniel certainly has the potential to become a successful professional race driver, but he needs financial support during the critical 'development' stage to turn that potential into reality. I am sure that any company entering into an arrangement with him will have ample opportunities for commercial leverage.
I am happy to talk about Daniel with anyone who is considering a commercial partnership or personal sponsorship with him.
Professional race driver & coach
Career highlights: 2-times Australian Driving Champion (1984, 85); 2-times Bathurst 1000 co-winner (1989, 94); Australian Touring Car Champion (1995); Australian Sports Car Champion (1986)
Owner, John Bowe Driving
Ph. (03) 9886-0522
I've known Daniel for the last four years, and have seen him develop from a very capable young kart racer to a mature racing car driver.
Daniel, like many young racing drivers, has the dream of reaching Formula One, the pinnacle of international motor sport. He has shown himself here in Australia and in the UK as being very capable and quick. He also can look after his machinery and finish races. To finish first, first you must finish!
Coupled with Daniel's ability inside the race car is his personal demeanour. He is a very polite and respectful young man, well-mannered and considerate of others.I believe that a racing driver needs not only to be quick but also the life skills that make a well-rounded human being. Daniel has both of these characteristics.
I recommend Daniel highly. He will be a great representative, advocate and champion for any brand or organisation with which he is involved.
Chairman, Morgan & Banks Investments
Suite 1, Level 1, 207 Ben Boyd Road,
Director, Australian Motor Sport Foundation
851 Dandenong Road,
Ph. (03) 9593-7777
I first met Daniel Erickson at a kart meeting at the Eastern Creek circuit five years ago. He was quick and well regarded in the kart community.
But even more impressive was Daniel's commitment to the team. He's a team player first and foremost and seemed at ease in technical discussions with engineers and mechanics.
In Australia the Governing Body, the Confederation of Australian Motorsport, has an excellent program for Rising Stars which is designed to help 'up and coming' drivers. I was delighted to learn that Daniel was to benefit from this program during his first season of national Formula Ford competition.
CAMS stuck by him in 2009 when he entered the tough and internationally respected British Formula Ford Championship. He grabbed the opportunity with both hands and worked long hours stitching together a deal to make his dream come true.
Where possible I tried to help with little pieces of media training advice but really Daniel did it on his own. He grew exponentially during this past season as a driver and as an ambassador for Australian Motorsport.
He's a proven winner with great potential. I'll be following his career with interest in 2010.
Motorsport Host, Channel 10/One HD
1 Saunders Street,
For many years I have managed motor racing teams and worked with young drivers, including three who went on to win the Indianapolis 500 in consecutive years: Buddy Rice (2004), Dan Wheldon (2005)and Sam Hornish Jr (2006). So it is with some authority that I say Daniel Erickson is a rarity.
Not only is he an exceptionally talented race driver, but he's a hard worker who doesn't whine about the struggle that is an integral part of making it to the top in any form of racing. I have no doubt that Daniel can be successful in the USA if he continues racing here.
Ph. (727) 368-4368
I write to endorse confidence in Daniel's driving ability , and his dedication to building a career to reach the pinnacle of motor racing in the world.
I have known and watched Daniel race over the last three years and have been impressed with his dedication, both in the various cars he has raced and the environment around him in motor sport. He is showing a maturity required to reach his goals, and has that very important will to win.
He recognises the importance not only of the machinery he races but also the benefactors and sponsors, and the importance they play in the journey.
Director, Australian Motor Sport Foundation
851 Dandenong Road,
Ph. (03) 9593-7777
Daniel has a lot of driving talent, and the mental awareness and focus to go with it when he is driving the car at the limit.
At VIR (April 8-10, 2010) he established that he was fast, but you need to dominate over here, which is what he did at the Watkins Glen IndyCar meeting (July 1-4, 2010) from Thursday testing through to winning both races on the weekend.
He is bright, educated and has good social skills. At Watkins Glen he was willing to pitch in to help the race team, and was patient when interacting with spectators. This is what really got everyone's attention, especially at such a high profile event.
WENDELL & SLADE MILLER
Owners, Quantum Racing Services
Ph. (405) 681-8561
I have had the privilege of working closely with Daniel in his 2009 British Formula Ford Championship season.
For several years I have led a sport science support programme in the UK for the Australian Motor Sport Foundation delivered to drivers on the International Rising Star programme. This programme incorporates intensive physiological, psychological and lifestyle support for aspiring drivers, and it was in this capacity that I worked with Daniel.
Daniel and I struck up an immediate rapport, mostly due to a professional approach to his driving and a willingness to discuss ways of improving himself, both on and off the track. I was hugely impressed with his dedication to his career, and the maturity to challenge himself in any way he could to get the results he desired. His determination to overcome disappointments and to refocus on success, mark him out as a young driver of huge potential.
His attitude toward fitness has also been exemplary. The need for high levels of physical fitness and strength is ever increasing in elite motorsport and Daniel applied himself extremely well. He sought to learn about his body and the demands of motorsport, and has prepared himself for the increased demands that will arise as he steps into higher powered cars. The physiological reports that were compiled over the season showed an increase in fitness levels in each of four tests.
On a personal level, Daniel is engaging to spend time with. He has a natural openness and friendliness about him. He clearly has the ability to build relationships with a wide range of people and this bodes well for a successful career in motorsport where he will meet a huge range of people in differing roles.
I have worked in professional motorsport for over 15 years and have had working relationships with many winners in single-seat motor racing including Formula Ford, Formula 3, Superleague Formula, A1GP, GP2 & Formula 1. My most notable client has been AMSF patron, Mark Webber, who I first met as a rookie 19 year old in 1996 in his British Formula Ford season.
In this time I have met many drivers of different nationalities who aspire to become successful in their chosen sport. Daniel Erickson, in my opinion, shows the personal characteristics that are required to achieve success in a very competitive environment. I warmly recommend him to you.
DR BRIAN HEMMINGS
BPS Chartered Sport & Exercise Psychologist; BASES Accredited Sport Psychologist
53 Old Forge Drive,
Northamptonshire NN6 7ET,
It's great to see an Aussie winning Formula Ford races in the UK. Formula Ford racing in England is the toughest apprenticeship in world motorsport, and with his success in this category Daniel clearly has the tools to go all the way to the top in racing.
Director, Brad Jones Racing
4/838 Hope Court,
Ph. (02) 6049-4602
Daniel displayed a distinguishable balance of focus, determination and calm which made him approachable within the paddock, resolute on the race track, and clearly worked well with his team. He faced setbacks with professionalism and was prepared to leave past conflicts behind and keep a clear head for the next encounter with the same competitors.
He was a great representative of his country and team and has a great future in motorsport, given the correct tools and support, and he is definitely a name to watch. His conduct and confidence will take him far in his chosen career.
PENNY MATTOCKS RacingLine Limited
Co-ordinator, MSA Formula Ford Championship of Great Britain
4 Quatro Park, Tanners Drive,
Milton Keynes MK14 5BP,
In a career spanning more than 25 years, I have been fortunate to work with some of Australia's leading racing car drivers. Having worked with him for some three years, it is my opinion that Daniel Erickson has the talent and the character to succeed in motor racing at the highest levels.
Daniel is honest and hard working and enjoys the support of a very close family. They are all supportive of his ambitions and have worked as an effective team to provide Daniel with the opportunities he has had to date. Their dedication to a common goal is commendable.
I look forward to continuing our relationship into the future and would have no hesitation in recommending Daniel to anyone in the motor racing industry.
Director, Borland Racing Developments Pty Ltd
39 Industrial Drive,
Ph: (03) 9590-5236
Daniel Erickson competed in Australian Formula Ford for two years - 2007/8. In his first season, racing Formula Ford 1600, he finished third in a major State competition.
He moved to the Australian Formula Ford Championship in 2008, finishing fourth overall and winning the prestigious Rookie of the Year Award. Daniel's racing skills improved markedly during these years as he matured. By the end of the 2008 season he had impressed observers with his ability to race positively and fairly, seizing his opportunities as they came.
Off the track he was very co‐operative with officials and racing personnel and took full advantage of the available promotional opportunities. His participation in the CAMS Rising Star program during these years provided additional training and guidance, which Daniel used to full advantage.
In 2009 Daniel moved to the United Kingdom to contest the British Formula Ford Championship, always a challenge for a young person so far from his home base. He continued to develop his skills throughout the season and finished strongly
We feel that Daniel's racing skills will continue to improve as his career moves forward and we wish him every success for the future.
Category Manager, Australian Formula Ford Manangement Pty Ltd
PO Box 3054,
I first met Daniel Erickson during 2005 at Eastern Creek Raceway, when he was introduced to me as an aspiring young kart racer. However, it was two years later that Daniel was selected to participate in an elite driver development program that I had the opportunity to work closely with and thus get to know him.
For the past three years it has been my distinct pleasure to watch Daniel develop into a young man whose maturity belies his age. He is hard working, respectful and dedicated with a character that is inherently honest and loyal.
Whilst we met under professional circumstances, I am very proud to count Daniel amongst my good friends. Upon meeting Daniel's family, it becomes apparent why he possesses the fine attributes that he does. His family is loving, nurturing and supportive of his goals. They have instilled in him a sense of confidence and pride that is neither conceited nor arrogant.
As a team, they have worked tirelessly to enable Daniel to pursue his motor racing goals and are to be commended on the success they have achieved. Daniel has the talent to match his determination and I believe this makes him a very rare commodity.
To any potential sponsor or team manager, I would say that no better ambassador could be found for your organisation. I wholeheartedly recommend Daniel to you and wish him every success in his motor racing endeavours.
Director, Zsidy Racing Pty Ltd
28 Lennox Ave,
Daniel did a yeoman's job throughout the (Formula Star Mazda) test.
We spent much of Tuesday waiting until the track was dry enough to get a few laps in on rain tyres. Those sessions were simply a familiarization of the car and the track, but unfortunately the track conditions prevented him from really getting much benefit.
Wednesday was a lot better. The weather was still quite cold, with wind gusts up to 22mph (35km/h), but at least Daniel was able to get a full day's driving.
I suspect the only difficulty he had early on was trusting the downforce generated by a car with wings, compared to the Formula Fords he has driven previously. It's difficult in perfect conditions to learn to drive a racing car that generates aero downforce, but it's even harder with a gusty wind because the downforce changes from corner to corner and lap to lap.
By the third session Daniel's lap times were very impressive considering he was driving on old tyres on a 'green' track. His car control in particular was excellent.
By the last session, which was the first time we gave Daniel tyres that were capable of producing reasonable times, he was in the low-1m 26s range. That's my target for a successful first test in good conditions, but considering the track's low grip level that day Daniel's times were quite remarkable. As a result of Daniel's performance that day we considered the real possibility of him setting a new track record.
On Thursday Daniel got within a tenth of a second of our record, on a track that was a half-second 'slow' according to a top IMSA Lites driver who knows MSR Houston very well. I am confident that Daniel would have improved his best time by at least a half-second into the 1m 24s with a little more work on just one section of the track. No-one has gone below 1m 25 since we switched to radial tires!
Australia should be proud of Daniel and really get behind him so he can show what he's capable of in the 2010 Star Mazda Championship.
(No longer trading)
In 2008 Race Brakes Sydney was approached by Bill Erickson to sponsor his nephew, Daniel, in that year's Australian Formula Ford Championship. The company was looking to raise its profile in Australian motorsport, and consequently provided brake materials for Daniel's Spectrum car during the championship.
Daniel obviously was a very talented young racing driver, having been selected into the Confederation of Australian Motor Sport's Rising Star assistance program for the second consecutive year. He continued to demonstrate his natural ability and dedication to achieving success throughout 2008, finishing fourth overall in the championship and winning the Rookie of the Year award.
Equally impressive was the commitment shown by Daniel's family - his parents, Peter and Marilyn, as well as his uncle Bill - to helping him gain a foothold in this very competitive and demanding sport. Daniel repaid their support, and that of his sponsors, with results that proved he has what it takes to climb further up the motorsport 'ladder'.
Race Brakes Sydney is proud to have played a part in the formative stages of Daniel's motor racing career, and wishes him every success in the future.
Partner, Race Brakes Sydney
Unit 6/79 Newton Rd,
Ph. (02) 9609-1101
As President of the Sydney Kart Racing Club I have seen Daniel grow and develop as a very capable racing driver.
From his early days in karting, Daniel's inate abilities were obvious. He was always competitive, safe, thoughtful and fast. Daniel went on to develop strong racecraft skills, and using these skills he was a very successful karting competitor.
Daniel is not only an excellent driver, but he possesses the skill of being able to provide feedback to his team. This makes him a great contributor to any team.
Daniel is a very presentable and accomplished young man. He shows considerable skills in addressing the general public and motorsport people.
I have no hesitation in recommending Daniel to potential sponsors or supporters. I believe he will go from success to success because of his love of the sport and his deciation to the job in hand.
ROBERT (BOB) BAKER, OAM
President, Sydney Karting Club
PO Box 406,
I became aware of Daniel Erickson via the Sydney Kart Racing Club where my son, who is only 10, races karts and has aspirations of progressing to Europe and pursuing a career in single seaters.
On hearing that Daniel was racing at the Formula Ford Festival this year, we flew over for the weekend to provide support. During our four days at Brands Hatch we were made to feel like part of the team. Daniel spent time with Tom, providing him with the aspiration to follow in his footsteps.
Daniel's performance on and off the track is a credit to Australia, CAMS, the AMSF and more importantly himself. Any future sponsor could have no doubt that Daniel's performance would value add to any investment made.