Mercury Racing general manager Erik Christiansen is leaving the Fond du Lac, Wis., high-performance marine engine and accessories company “to pursue an opportunity outside of the marine industry.” The news of his departure, effective tomorrow, was announced in a press release from Mercury Marine, the parent company of Mercury Racing.
Erik Christiansen (right) was groomed for the top job at Mercury Racing by industry legend Fred Kiekhaefer (left).
Christiansen has run the racing business for Mercury since taking over for Fred Kiekhaefer in 2013 and has spent more than 20 years at the company. He was instrumental in the successful launch of many of Mercury Racing’s best-known products including the Verado 400R outboard engine and integral in the design of the company’s Quad Cam Four Valve (QC4v) engine series, which ranges from 860 hp to 1,750 hp.
“I am sorry to hear Erik is leaving Mercury Racing,” Kiekhaefer said. “He was highly passionate, clearly technically capable in all meanings of the word—engineering and business management—and did a pretty damn good job.”
Steve Miller, director of marketing, sales and service for Mercury Racing, has been named interim general manager, according to the release. Miller has been with Mercury since 1993 and has been a part of the success of the Mercury Racing program during the past three years. Prior to that, he helped in the launch of many of Mercury's mainline outboard projects including the 150-hp FourStroke and the introduction of the Verado.
Christiansen could not be reached for comment when this story went live.