DRIVERS: DEREK DALY
Name: Derek Daly
Nationality: United States of America
Date of birth: March 11, 1953 - Dundrum, Dublin, Ireland
Born in Dublin in 1953, Daly started out racing in stock cars in his native Ireland. He then headed off to Australia to work in the tin mines to pay for a serious single-seater career in British Formula Ford. In 1976 he shot to prominence with victory in the Formula Ford Festival in a Hawke. This led to the chance to race a Chevron for Derek MacMahon Racing in the British Formula 3 series. Daly won one of the two British titles and moved on to Formula 2 in 1978 with MacMahon and Creighton Brown forming Ardmore Racing to run an ICI-sponsored Chevron. Daly won twice that year at Mugello and Vallelunga while also trying to break into F1 with Hesketh and Ensign. He scored his first F1 point finishing sixth in Canada for Ensign.
In 1979 he moved to Ron Dennis's Project Four Racing in an ICI-sponsored March-BMW. He was a frontrunner but did not win a race until the end of the year. In F1 he continued with Ensign before being taken on by Ken Tyrrell to drive a third Tyrrell in Canada. That led to a Tyrrell contract in 1980 and he finished fourth in Argentina and Britain. He also escaped unhurt from two huge crashes: one at Monaco when he cart wheeled over several cars at the start of the race; and the other in Holland where the car went straight on at Tarzan and was launched high into the air by the tyre barriers.
In 1981 he switched to the RAM team which had the new March 811 chassis with sponsorship from Guinness and Rizla. The team was not a great success and at the start of 1982 Daly moved to Theodore. He soon got his big chance when Carlos Reutemann retired and Daly took over the second Williams, alongside Keke Rosberg but at the end of the year he was dropped to make way for Jacques Laffite.
Daly went to America and began racing with the Wysard team in CART. In 1984, driving for the Provimi Veal March team he had a huge accident at Michigan International Speedway. The front of the car was torn off in the impact and Daly suffered serious leg injuries. He returned to Indycars later with the Raynor Garage Doors team and then moved on to sports cars with Nissan and Jaguar, winning two victories in the Sebring 12 Hours with Nissan. He retired in 1992.
He has worked for many years as a TV commentator with ESPN and Speed Channel in the US, while also running a racing school in Las Vegas. He is now an American citizen.