Sunday, June 20, 2021
HomeStoriesOne to Watch: Daniel Teklehaimanot

One to Watch: Daniel Teklehaimanot

-

Hidden away in North East Africa – ‘The Horn’ – bordering Ethiopia and Sudan is a little known country called Eritrea, officially ‘The State of Eritrea.’ At 118,000 square kilometres it’s around half the size of the United Kingdom; with a population similar to that of Scotland at an estimated five million. It’s better known for producing athletes of the running variety, but one ambitious, young sportsman is breaking the trend. Daniel Teklehaimanot, born in Eritrea in November 1988, is our man.

He first started making a name for himself when he took the U23 African National Time Trial Championships in 2008.

Daniel Teklehaimanot
Daniel is a very good time triallist. Image:©Silke.

Following this he was contacted by the UCI World Cycling Centre to offer him the opportunity to take his racing to the next level.

At the same time he was also offered a place at Amore & Vita professional continental team as a stagiaire.

His national federation interfered with the latter and he moved to the UCI Centre at Aigle, Switzerland in May the following year.

This first season based in Europe served as a break-through year for the Eritrean.

His best result of the season was an excellent 6th place at the Tour de L’Avenir, week long stage race in France.

He was already mixing it amongst riders who had already secured their places in the ProTour ranks for the following season.

He stayed with the Swiss based unit through 2010 where he once again made a big impression on his rivals.

His slight, climbers physique allowed him to excel as the road turned upwards and resulted in several wins including a big win at the Coupe des Nations in Québéc, Canada.

Daniel Teklehaimanot
Could Daniel be the first rider from his country to secure a pro contract?

This result, amongst others, caught the eye of the directors at the professional outfit Cervelo Test Team who offered him a spot as a stagiere on their team in the summer of 2010.

However, the plug was pulled on the Cervelo connection with the news that Cervelo test Team was no more – the big stars joining Garmin but the stagiaires left to their own devices.

He recently proved how much he has learnt and progressed over the season and from racing with the world’s best by taking full honours in the African Continental Championships.

Teklehaimanot came home with gold in not only the U23 time trial; but the senior time trial title, both team time trial titles and both U23 and senior road titles.

To put it simply, he won everything there was on offer.

Daniel Teklehaimanot
Third overall in the Tour du Loiret behind Fabien Pasquier and Francois Lamiraud.

Carrying that form forward, the Eritrean then won the Tour of Rwanda – a tough race in ‘the land of one thousand hills,’ where the opposition including US Team Type 1 which has just made the jump from Continental to Pro Continental.

Team Type 1 main man Phil Southerland was mightily impressed by Teklehaimanot’s performance and despite his roster being complete for 2011 is currently trying to find the cash – and UCI co-operation – to sign the Eritrean.

Whatever the outcome, Daniel Teklehaimanot is definitely a rider who we’re likely to hear a lot more of in the coming years.

Tom Copelandhttps://www.veloveritas.co.uk
Having spent a few years racing in France with Brest Iroise Cyclisme 2000, Tom will be racing for Sigma Sport Specialized Racing Team in 2011.

Related Articles

Our Time in Belgium, by Norman Gower

One of VeloVeritas’ functions it seems is unlocking the memories of those stalwarts – like our own mentor and soothsayer, Viktor and indeed, our editor Martin - who beat a path in the 70’s and 80’s to the legendary Mrs. Deene’s boarding house in Gent (and later in Zomergem) to show those Belgies how it should be done. The latest epistle which came our way was from Norman Gower.

Douglas Dewey – Aiming for The World Tour but Touring the World Instead

My eyes snap open to golden dappled rays silhouetting pine branches above - beneath me a pillow of twigs and earth, nearby a lake nestled between snowy peaks shimmers enticingly. My legs are in a tent, my body protruding out. I think I'm naked.

Mark Stewart – “I realise AN Post is ‘the real deal'”

The last time we spoke to Scotland’s top endurance track rider, Mark Stewart he’d just added to his growing medal collection at the European Championships with bronze in the team pursuit and silver in the scratch. Some nice road results in the Ronde van Oost Vlaanderen followed where he made his breakthrough from riding as a domestique and/or ‘getting round’ to being a serious contender for stage and overall honours.

Kuurne Brussels Kuurne Bikes

It was Sean Connery's character in the film "The Untouchables" who suggested you don't bring a knife to a gun fight and it was clear that the weapons of choice at the opening classics weekend in Belgium would contribute to the outcome and individual's performance. Having wandered around the teams at both the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad and Kuurne-Bruxelles-Kuurne it became clear there was a lot of nice kit being readied to race.

Silas Goldsworthy – on Track at the International Belgian Open

If you’re a regular VeloVeritas reader then you’ll be aware of top Scottish time trial rider, Silas Goldsworthy’s quest to qualify for the individual pursuit in the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. We've just written about his victory in the classic Scottish event the Tour des Trossachs, but Silas' most recent opportunity to dip under the qualifying standard for the Games came in that Mecca for Six Day racing - Gent. But not on the tiny 167 metre Kuipke Velodrome where Sercu, De Wilde and Keisse have ruled down through the ages; but on the 250 metre covered track in Gent – scene of the ‘International Belgian Open.’ Those UCI rules just keep changing; and now riders have to qualify individually just to ride World Cups, never mind World Championships. We spoke to Silas after he’d had a chance to gather his thought about his excursion to VeloVeritas’s favourite city.

Jeremy Greengrass Remembers ‘THAT’ 25

After the excellent articles on Alf Engers competition record published on VeloVeritas, specifically Part 2, but also Part 1, I thought I should try to recall my memories of that day away back in 1978. At 14 years old it's not often that you can say that "I was there" but I was.