After 11 years in the professional cycling business, American Danny Pate says signing for HTC-Highroad in 2011 couldn’t have come at a better moment for him.“Mentally, I needed a new start and new surroundings and it’s a huge luxury to be able to sign for a top team and get the chance to move ahead again,” the 31-year-old from Colorado reflects,“Last season  wasn’t at all great for me, I didn’t perform well and often ended up at the wrong sort of races for me. But I’m still convinced I have a lot to offer as a pro bike racer and I’m determined to prove that at HTC-Highroad.”
The former U-23 World Time Trial Champion has raced with American teams nearly all his career and is convinced that “HTC-Highroad’s setup is going to be familiar to me in a lot of ways, which is a huge plus.”
“I’ll be focussing again on team time trials and leadouts for sprinters, as well as getting a chance for myself occasionally in some individual time trials. That combination of objectives is what I’ve done best in in the past, too. The HTC management could see last year what I was doing and they appreciated that I could slot into all sorts of similar areas with their squad, too.”
Pate’s discussions with HTC-Highroad for 2011 started after he and team owner Bob Stapleton met in passing at race hotels during the season.
“Bob’s a businessman, but he’s got a really approachable personality, too and we started chatting. I quickly realized that in HTC, I’d be working in an environment I liked.”
For 2011, Pate plans to further develop his specialty, individual time trialling, ""but I’m equally happy riding as a team worker. I was in that role when I did the Giro and Tour de France back to back in 2008 and 2009, and in one of those races that I had one of the best moments of my career, when I got third in a mountainous stage on the Tour.""
Pate is making it a goal this year to focus on the Tour of California, whether riding for himself or another rider. "Whatever best suits the squad as a whole is what I’ll be happy doing.”
DOB: March 24, 1979
Birth Place: Colorado
Current Residence: Colorado Springs, CO
Weight: 72 kg (155 lb)
Strengths: All Around
Pro Since: 2000
3rd Overall Critérium International
5th Overall Tour Méditerranéen
Stage Winner Tour de Georgia 2009
Winner Giro d’Italia TTT 2008
Hometown: North Garden, VA
Ben King came to everyone’s attention with his gutsy win at the 2010 US Pro Road Race Championship in Greenville, South Carolina. The Trek-Livestrong rider was part of an early break and survived until the end, earning the stars and stripes jersey.
This was not the first national jersey for King. In 2010 he was both U-23 road and criterium national champion.
In 2011 he transferred to the RadioShack-Nissan team and won the young rider classification at the Tour of Beijing. In addition to Beijing, King raced some of the classics such as Scheldeprijs and Paris-Roubaix. He ended his season with a solid ride at the USA Pro Cycling Challenge.
The former national road champion started his 2012 European campaign backing RadioShack-Nissan’s strong riders in such races as the Critérium International and Vuelta al Pais Vasco. He was also part of the RadioShack-Nissan roster for the Amgen Tour of California.
Canadian born, Nic Hamilton Enjoys climbing and time trials. His words to his fans are Impossible. Potential. Reality. Riding on Jelly Belly he has acquired many favorite flavors.
Pro Since: 2009
1st Tour of Walla Walla GC
1st Mt Hood Classic Stage 2
2nd Tour of Walla Walla GC Time Trial
2nd Provincial Championship Road Race
2nd Giro de Whistler
3rd Tour of Walla Walla GC Road Race
Hometown: Boulder, CO
Matt Cooke is a former elite national road champion. After winning that race he decided he was going to focus one-hundred percent on racing. Cooke, at 135 pounds, is a born climber, showing that strength in the Tour of the Gila where he finished in 9th place overall. He was then 25th in the US Pro Road Race Championships in Greenville, South Carolina. Cooke grabbed his first victory of the year in stage 3 of the Tour de Beauce in Canada, finishing the stage race in 5th place on the general classification.