Where It All Began
Skipping a math lesson in 2005 to ride bikes on a school visit from British Cycling’s Talent Team is a little detached from the normal route into cycling, but seemed to work out for a 14-year-old more interested in competitive battles than crunching numbers.
One month later Dani King was quickly inaugurated into two-wheeled culture and had already kissed the tarmac, dusted off, been tactically outwitted in a circuit race and cried before vowing to become Olympic and World Champion.
King’s path into cycling at the highest level can only be described as direct. A previous county level breast stroke swimmer Dani missed one missed math lesson which resulted in an invite onto the Talent Team and the British Cycling programme of development.
Over winter in her first season a podium finish at the cyclo-cross National Championships, Two stage wins in Achtervelt, Holland and later that summer Two podium finishes on the track attracted Iain Dyer’s attention and selection for the track’s Olympic Development sprint squad followed. Within eighteen months the European Track Championships beckoned, but ninth place wasn’t exactly the success Dani imagined.
Taking advice from various people a change of direction was decided, with a future in endurance events on road and track over the explosive and specialist sprint discipline. With a place on the endurance Olympic Development team confirmed, there was only one obvious route to take: from Manchester to Belgium and the notorious European way of bike racing.
By December 2008, Dani had a new coach, Courtney Rowe and was well in to training for the following season. It was then that Dani joined the recently formed Vision One professional women’s road racing team, that included World and Olympic Champion Nicole Cooke. During 2009, Dani was the winner of 9 domestic races including a top 3 finish as an under 23 year old in the National Road…
With a new team, Horizon Fitness Racing, the year has produced a ‘mixed bag’ for Dani. A hard months training in Australia during the winter set Dani up strongly for the forthcoming season.
Dani finished strongly in the “Tour of Flanders” for Great Britain and 2 top 25 finishes in World class road races later that month indicated that Dani was heading for her best season. This was followed by 3 domestic wins before travelling to the continent where she subsequently won two further road races in Wodecq, and Prosperpolder, Belgium. A win during the inaugural “Halfords Tour Series” women’s elite race seemed to be setting up Dani nicely for a potential great result at the National Road race championships later that month and international races…
An unexpected e-mail in October 2010 from Paul Manning, the new coach for the Great Britain women’s pursuit team inviting Dani to ‘try out’ with the other Academy & Podium riders was all that Dani needed to get the bit between her teeth once again. Since the beginning of the first track session in November 2010 to the World Cup in Manchester, March 2011 Dani has produced and shocked some of Britain’s elite coaches and riders alike.
Following her World cup appearance Dani continued to grow to the extent where she found herself in selection for the World Championships in Holland during the latter part of March 2011. The rest, as they say is history. Gold medallist & World Team Pursuit Champion is a meteoric rise with subsequent results!!!