Mountain bike specialist Daniel McConnell began cycling at 13 years of age and made his first Australian Team in 2002. At the age of 23 McConnell made his Olympic debut at the 2008 Beijing Games and placed 39th in the mountain bike cross-country event.
McConnell faced a technically difficulty and fast course on his second Olympic appearance at the London 2012 Games where he claimed 21st. In one of the major cycling upsets in London, 2004 and 2008 Olympic Champion Julien Absalon of France was forced to withdraw with a tyre puncture and the men’s race was won by Juroslav Kulhavy of the Czech Republic.
McConnell won bronze at the 2014 Commonwealth Games, secured fifth and 11th place finishes in the 2015 World Cup season and finished second at the 2016 Oceania Championships to secure selection for his third Olympic Games appearance in Rio. He sat inside the top three after the opening lap but a broken wheel soon cruelled his chances of a top ten finish with McConnell eventually claiming 16th.