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As many of you know, Fan Clubs are, at their core, interviews with people we like and respect and are for whatever reason(s) are drawn to. They are, in effect, a celebration of that person, our relationship with that person and oh yeah, a way for all of us to better understand that person and their relationship with professional cycling. However, because we’re mostly talking to people we already know, it can be a bit of closed loop. In an effort to balance that out, we’re now doing Fan Clubs with people we’ve only met in passing, or come highly recommended, or have heard about, etc. We’ve heard about Danny Pate because he’s Danny Pate for Christ’s sake. But who is he really? No clue, let’s find out together.

Twenty and One Questions™ with Danny Pate

Has anyone in Europe (or the US for that matter) ever mispronounced your last name as “Paté”, like the edible spread made of ground meat and fat?

Yeah it happens. But only in France. It’s a French thing.

How would smaller teams (teams of six rather than of eight) change the dynamics of a race? Do you think small teams would make races more exciting?

For sure smaller teams would be more exciting. Cycling is too traditional, there are lots of rules and formats that have been around forever that could be changed. With eight guys on a team it can be too easy for big Pro Tour teams to control the race. There are times when it seems the team captain doesn’t even have to ride hard because the team around him is so strong.

What do you think could be done to make racing better, more exciting, cooler?

Smaller teams. This alone will create more one-on-one situations. More racing. Also the time trial and the team time trial could be reworked. I like the Eddy Merckx time trial: a time trial where we just ride the bike that we’ve been riding the rest of the race, no special gear or bikes. I also like the idea of a 30k-ish team time trial that finishes with a 10k climb and without the need to finish together. So basically you’re talking about a complete lead out.

Chocolate chip cookies should always have? Chocolate chip cookies should never have? Tacos should always have? Tacos should never have?

I like cookies but that’s only because cake is not so easily accessible. Tacos, cookies, and cake—you can’t put rules on those things.

The Elisabeth Kubler-Ross model states that there are five stages of grief: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance. Are these the same five steps that one experiences upon waking up to see a nude Brad Huff?

Brad has a way to make you feel all emotions at once. If you deal with him, at some point he will be nude. With Brad you will go through all these stages and more. But it’s all worth it just to know Brad.

Pluses and minuses of using duct tape to adhere bandages to your body?

Pluses: It’s cheap, much cheaper than second skin. It’s readily accessible It’s my standard, go-to! Minuses: Not many, maybe it doesn’t work as well as monster tape?

First album/cassette you bought with your own money?

I don’t remember the first cassette that I bought but I do remember the first cassette I wanted. My neighbor had it: Motley Crue’s – Girls Girls Girls. I went to my neighbor’s house one day and was like, “What the fuck is this?!” We would just skateboard and BMX to it all day!

What’s your take on Michael Jordan’s Hitler mustache, and what do you make of the accusations that his time playing baseball came about due to the NBA catching him betting, and having to suspend him, but not wanting to announce it?

I didn’t know anything about the allegations. As soon as Jordan stopped playing basketball I stopped caring about what he was doing, I mean when I was a kid he was THE ATHLETE. I’ve seen his mustache and I would say no. He should stop doing that.

Funniest/weirdest thing you’ve ever heard riders talk about during a race (feel free to omit names)?

It’s wildest in the European peloton, Europeans are different than Americans. One day during Paris-Nice “Person X” was talking to my teammate, but so loudly he was basically sharing with our whole group. He was talking about meeting this girl, hanging with this girl. He was talking about this box of utensils that she brought. A box that she used on him. This was Tinder before Tinder, basically he was sharing TOO MUCH information. It was kinda unreal.

Dos, don’ts and general tips you would give to a fan about how or how not to safely give a pro cyclist a helping hand (a sling) on a climb?

The biggest problem is that people try to do it when you don’t need to do it. If you’re going to sling, at least wait for the very last guys. The guys in the middle of the race don’t need your help.

Your last name has been a nickname at different points in history for people with the following characteristics: Man With A Bald Head, Man With Large And Clumsy Hands And Feet, Man Who Is Trustworthy. Which suits you best?

Man Who Is Trustworthy.

What’s the best thing about California?

It’s at sea level.

What’s the worst thing about California?

It’s not Colorado.

Phil Liggett routinely refers to the Tour of California as “the fourth Grand Tour”, please weigh in.

Well he’s paid to say whatever he says. So they probably tell him to say that! I like the ATOC but you just can’t match the grand tours.

Who would play you in a movie about your life?

We’d have to do auditions. I don’t think I know anyone who could do it yet.

Bathroom decorum when sharing a hotel room with a teammate during a race?

One teammate I had, Josh Edmondson, he would use all the towels. I have no idea what he was doing. I know it was for his hair, but I don’t know what the actual process was. He ran heavily-greased, slicked-back hair. It was like he was stripping, sanding, and completely repainting the car each day rather than just washing it.

What’s the best move you’ve ever done in a bike race. Like, what is your proudest moment racing professionally?

I don’t think I have one proudest moment. But I am very happy that I was able to get myself to a point in the sport where I was able to race the Tour de France. Just being there was such a big thing! It’s a different animal. You’re in the Super Bowl of cycling. It was amazing thing to be in that race.

What’s the dumbest thing you’ve ever done in a race?

I’ve been fairly lucky to not pull too many dumb moves.

Who’s your favorite dude(s) to talk to in the peleton? What do you guys talk about in there?

A lot of my former teammates, like Svein Tuft. It’s usually just catching up, checking in on normal life stuff. Everyone seems to talk about bike racing. Depends on how hard the race is though, sometimes you don’t talk about anything. Basically everyone is shooting the shit out there, lots of bike nerd talk.

Did you know that you have more than thirty times the amount of Twitter followers than the legendary comedian Gallagher does? Do you feel guilty, happy, sad, elated or perplexed by this? How do you feel about Gallagher? How do you feel about watermelon?

Twitter is pretty funny! I’ve got 30k Twitter followers. It kinda of baffles that people are reading and receiving these little snippets of my thoughts. I think Gallagher just hit the wrong demographic, like my Mom is his demographic. But you know, if Twitter is saying I’m more popular than Gallagher, I can’t argue with that.

Rate-the-Pates: William Pate (Sheriff of London in 1734), Jerry Pate (golfer, winner of the 1976 US Open), Maurice Pate (co-founder of UNICEF under Herbert Hoover), Johnny Pate (Jazz bassist sampled in the Jay-Z song “Show Me What You Got”.

Jerry Pate Johnny Pate Maurice Pate William Pate

Fun Facts™ With Danny Pate

Favorite Food


Favorite Color


Favorite Band/Song

I’ve been listening to the Alt-J station on Pandora.

Favorite Movie/Video Game

Too tough to call.

Pre-Race Superstition

Get up as late as possible and take a poop beforehand. These are the only requirements.

If you weren't a cyclist, what would you be?

Probably a mechanic, or an engineer if i was really lucky.

What do you do when you're bored?

I spend a lot of time on the Internet. Recently I think I’ve been spending too much non-bored time on Instagram.


I have some.

Guilty Pleasure(s)

Too much food… maybe alcohol?.



Favorite Power Ranger


Prized Possession

Kelli Emmett.

What's most surprising about you?

Mind reading.

If you were a superhero, what would your power be?

Mind reading.

Celebrity Crush

Kelli Emmett.

Celebrity Role Models


Worst Fear(s)

Heights (see only flying in the dark).

Bad Habits

Sleeping in too much, it’s kinda a waste of time.


Not really.

Favorite Quote

“When in doubt air it out.”

What's your favorite smoothie!!!???

Smoothies? My favorite smoothie is a chocolate shake.

Weirdest Dream

I hate those dreams when you’re urinating in the dream and then you wake up and you haven’t pissed the bed but you THINK you’ve pissed yourself. Happens to me all the time.

Hidden Talents

See flying in the dark.

Fanmail Address

Twitter: @thedpate & Instagram: @thedpate

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