|Residence: Boulder, Colorado USA
Birthdate: March 13, 1978
Weight: 130 lbs.
Tom was born and raised in East Lyme, Connecticut, USA, the only child of Terry and Etta Danielson. In his early years, Tom was no stranger to sports, riding motocross and running track in high school.
Tom began racing mountain bikes in 1994 and after some successes racing in New England, he moved onto Team Devo, the leader in U.S. junior development teams.
In 1996 Tom won the NCS points series as a junior and represented the U.S. as a member of the Junior Worlds team in Australia.
The next year Tom raced elite and headed off to Colorado to attend Fort Lewis College in Durango, and to pursue his career in off-road racing. Three years of mediocre results saw Tom’s career on the mountain bike stagnating.
In the fall of 2001, Tom met Rick Crawford who would eventually turn his career around. That fall, with Crawford’s assistance, Tom won a National Championship with Fort Lewis College. That winter Tom worked closely with Crawford who helped him realize his potential on the road.
During the spring, Tom raced on the road for the Sobe/Headshok team attending races in Arizona and the front range of Colorado.
Tom showed immense potential but was still green when it came to experience on the road bike. Intense structure and training from Crawford led Tom to his early-season focus: New Mexico’s Tour of the Gila. With some impressive climbing and an overall 8th place finish, Tom caught the eye of the powerful Team Mercury.
Being thrown into the the deep end of professional racing could be a daunting task to some, but Tom welcomed the opportunity with both arms.
One of Tom’s first big races with his new team was the five-stage Estes Cycling Challenge in Estes Park, Colorado. Danielson won the opening prologue and then with excellent team support he won the next day’s 87-mile Devil’s Gulch Road Race.
The chase for the overall title was all but over by stage three when Tom dominated the field and won the Trail Ridge Hill Climb Time-trial by 5 minutes, an awesome performance ending at an altitude of almost 11,000 feet.
Tom’s next big performance came during the middle of the summer, when he traveled to China to race the Tour of Qinghai Lake with the U.S. Team. Strong performances in the mountains and a Time Trial win gave Tom his first international stage win only two months into his career as a professional cyclist.
Tom then went on to race domestically, supporting teammate Chris Wherry at the Cascade Cycling Classic, and the Saturn Cycling Classic.
Tom tackled the slopes of the New Hampshire’s Mt. Washington, winning the race and breaking Tyler Hamilton’s record by almost a minute.
There was no slowing down for Tom in 2003, as part of the dominant US Powerhouse, Team Saturn. Success came early when Tom took the overall win at the Tour de Langkawi, one of the largest stage races in the world.
His winning ways continued throughout the season with victories at the Nature Valley Grand Prix, the Cascade Cycling Classic, the Tour de Toona, and a repeat win at the Mountain Washington Hill Climb.
In 2004, Tom signed on with the Italian squad, Fassa Bortolo. There, he gained valuable experience in the European peloton. Back in Colorado, Tom broke yet another long-standing Hill Climb record, the Bob Cook Memorial Mt. Evans Hill Climb race. He won the 28-mile event which has an elevation gain of 6,500 feet and reaches a final altitude of 14,120 feet, in 1:41:20, four minutes faster than the race’s previous best time.
Tom had several solid performances for Fassa Bortolo, while learning the intricacies of racing at the highest level, including a top 20 finish at the Tour of Romandie.
In April of 2005, Tom proved to his new Discovery team that he has what it takes to win at the elite ranks by winning the Dodge Tour de Georgia. The win was sealed on the Brasstown Bald stage where he left the rest of the peloton gasping and won the stage on the super-steep climb to the finish.
In 2006, while riding for Discovery, Tom won the grueling stage 17 of the Vuelta a España and continued to support his team in several team victories through 2007.
Tom has helped create the Fort Lewis College Cycling Scholarship fund to assist young collegiate cyclists. In November of 2006, Tom established the Tom Danielson Junior Race Series and Camps to provide support, encouragement, and skills development to junior racers in a competitive environment.
Since 2008, Tom has continued to thrive while riding for Garmin-Transitions. In March of 2010, Tom and his wife welcomed their first child, Steven.
Last updated 4.16.10