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Riding with Tom Danielson

August 4, 2011

I hoisted my woman’s Trek 5200 onto the top of our Forester and left for Boulder under dark gray clouds. It rained on the drive up Highway 93. It drizzled in Boulder as I eased my car past the gate adorned with a large metal heart that led to the Danielsons’ home.

“Will we still ride?” I asked Tom as stood in his kitchen and poured coffee before the interview started. His “yes” response seemed to imply: what’s a little rain?

Stephanie and Stevie Danielson

After the tape recorders and cameras clicked off, Tom changed into his Garmin-Cervélo kit and rolled his bike onto the patio in front of the house. Vic Lombardi, CBS4 Sports anchor, joined him and immediately fired off question after question: “So why is everything you wear so tight? Why do you shave your legs? What are your dimensions?” Maybe his questions were coming from the perspective of his Channel 4 audience, who wouldn’t know these things.

I trotted over to where I had parked my car. Unsure if they would leave without me, I scrambled to pull down my bike, shove my feet into bike shoes, put on my helmet, and slip a piece of paper and pen into my jersey back pocket as the remaining questions I had wanted to ask Tom leaked out of my brain.

My shoes crunched over blue stones as I rolled my bike over to the driveway. All three of us lined up behind a white Channel 4 Jeep, hatch opened where a guy in a green tee-shirt aimed a video camera at us. OK, was I supposed to be there? I asked the guy in the green shirt. He said, “It doesn’t matter. I’m only filming those two.” Well OK then. Truly, I didn’t want to be filmed. I weigh ten pounds more than Tom, but my hips appear to be twice as wide.

We set off to do a small loop around Tom’s home several times. Roosters crowed. We pedaled past goats and grassy fields with the FlatIrons somewhat visible through the mist. Vic continued his rapid-fire questions.

Tom Danielson riding in Boulder, Vic Lombardi next to him

Actually, I didn’t mind. I had already gotten the answer to one of the questions I had most wanted to ask. “Tom, can I ask you a personal question?” I managed to squeeze this in before Vic caught up to us as we headed out the driveway. “Sure,” he said. “Did you sleep every night during the Tour de France with the pillow you posted on Twitter?” He said yes.

Pillow made by Stephanie Danielson that Tom packed for the 2011 TDF, photo by Tom Danielson

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For the interview with Tom, go to http://procyclinggolden.com.

 

From → Pro-Cyclists

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