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Danielson struggles with illness in Colorado

Tom Danielson (Garmin-Cervelo) is one of the race favorites.

Tom Danielson (Garmin-Cervelo) is one of the race favorites. (Image credit: Jon Devich/

Garmin-Cervelo’s Tom Danielson tweeted that he felt ill on the eve of the USA Pro Cycling Challenge’s decisive stage three time trial held in Vail. Team doctor Kevin Sprouse stated that the rider was treated for his condition through the night and was well enough to start the 16km uphill event.

"Tom was up suffering all night with gastroenteritis," Sprouse said. "We treated his symptoms and spent the early morning getting him comfortable to the point so that he could rest and keep food down. He is really determined to start the day so we are going to monitor him and he is going to take the start.

"Gastroenteritis is generally viral but can be bacterial and we are rarely able to determine the cause. The best we can do is treat the symptoms and let the body heal which is what we are trying to do."

During the morning of the time trial, Danielson tweeted that he had a rough night battling food poisoning and that he hoped to start the time trial. He later tweeted that he was going to ‘give it a go and start’.

"He was throwing up and whatever else but we all ate the same food and no one else go sick so it is probably just a little stomach bug that he caught," said Garmin-Cervelo boss Jonathan Vaughters. "He has a little stomach bug, what it is I don’t know, but he is definitely going to start today. He’ll probably need a little extra cheering from all the fans."

Danielson rode into a decisive breakaway during the ‘queen’ stage two from Gunnison to Aspen. The breakaway split over the top of the second ascent over Independence Pass and down a technical descent to the finish line. His companions included stage winner George Hincapie (BMC Racing), overall race leader Tejay Van Garderen (HTC-Highroad), Eduard Beltran (EPM-UNE), Janier Acevedo (Gobernacion de Antioquia) and Bruno Pires (Leopard Trek). He started the stage three time trial sitting in third place overall.

"I think he will be fine for the rest of the stage race but for this to happen today is less than optimal," Vaughters said. " So far so good, obviously Tom’s illness knocks a little bit of kink into our plan, but we have to live with that kind of thing, move on and move forward. We will see how today goes but we have no set strategy until we see how today goes."

Danielson fought to fourth on the stage, 33 seconds off stage winner Levi Leipheimer.

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Kirsten Frattini is an honours graduate of Kinesiology and Health Science from York University in Toronto, Canada. She has been involved in bike racing from the grassroots level to professional cycling's WorldTour. She has worked in both print and digital publishing, and started with Cyclingnews as a North American Correspondent in 2006. Moving into a Production Editor's role in 2014, she produces and publishes international race coverage for all cycling disciplines, edits news and writes features. Currently the Women's Editor at Cyclingnews, Kirsten coordinates global coverage of races, news, features and podcasts about women's professional cycling.