Despite Weather Cancelling Stage 1, Amgen Tour Launches From Nevada City
Despite the cancellation of Stage 1 of the 2011 Amgen Tour of California, cyclists were able to ride an adjusted course and loop around California’s capitol on Monday on Stage 2 of the 8-day course.
“This is the first time we’ve had to cancel a stage of the race,” said Andrew Messick, President, AEG Sports, presenter of the race. “I feel bad for the people in the Lake Tahoe region who didn’t have the chance to view some of the best cyclists in the world. We missed a great race, but I don’t necessarily think that there will be a competitive impact on how the race unfolds and who ultimately wins. We have always said we have incredible diversity in terrain and now we have incredible diversity in the weather.”
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Race organizers determined that the best way to ensure a complete course for Stage 2 of the 2011 Amgen Tour of California was to move the official start to 12:15 p.m. Monday to a location on Broad Street in Nevada City, California. Today’s start was originally scheduled to take place in Squaw Valley, California.
Following the peloton’s 12:15 p.m. departure from Nevada City, the riders traveled approximately 61 miles to Sacramento, picking up the original Stage 2 route. The riders will enter Sacramento at approximately 3 p.m. and complete three circuit laps before finishing in front of the Capitol Building between 3:30 and 3:45 p.m. The race’s original schedule called for only one complete circuit, but due to the modified course, the additional two circuits were able to be added.
“Thanks to the quick action taken by Duane Strawser, Nevada City’s 2010 local organizing committee (LOC) chairman, we were able to make this location change, allowing us a great and practical location to lead off today’s race,” said Messick. “Nevada City did an outstanding job hosting the first stage of the 2010 race and we know that the riders and fans will appreciate the return. We owe a debt of gratitude to Andy Chapman, Carol Chaplin and everyone in Squaw Valley, who worked tirelessly to create what would have been an exceptional Stage 2 start and hope that we will have an opportunity to bring the Amgen Tour of California to the city in a future year.”
The City of Santa Clarita and Local Organizing Committee for the Amgen Tour of California will be hosting free viewing parties at local restaurants in anticipation of the world’s top cyclists heading to Santa Clarita on Sunday. The viewing parties will take place from 7 to 9 p.m. at Salt Creek Grille on Wednesday, May 18 and BJ’s Restaurant and Brewhouse on Thursday, May 19.
“As the riders race down through California en route to Santa Clarita., cycling fans can watch the nightly recap of the race as it winds its way through the State at the local viewing parties,” commented Mayor Marsha McLean. “Viewing parties are a fun way for everyone to experience the race with friends and other community members.”
The restaurants will be broadcasting the Versus nightly recap of the race while offering guests drink specials all evening long. Santa Clarita’s Local Organizing Committee for the race will be raffling off great prizes as well, including Tour merchandise, limited-edition Santa Clarita Trail Packs, and more.
On Sunday, the City of Santa Clarita will host the start ceremonies for the final leg the race at the Westfield Valencia Town Center. Spectators can expect fun activities for the whole family leading up to the race including tricycle races, autograph signings with many of the world’s top cyclists, and the exciting start of the race itself. The start ceremonies will begin at 10:00a.m. with the crack of the starter’s pistol sounding at noon.
Salt Creek Grille is located at 24415 Town Center Drive and BJ’s Restaurant and Brewhouse is located at 24320 Town Center Drive. For more information on the Amgen viewing parties or the Amgen Tour of California, contact Evan Thomason at (661) 286-4167 or visit santa-clarita.com/tourofca.
About the Amgen Tour of California
The largest cycling event in America, the 2011 Amgen Tour of California is a Tour de France-style cycling road race, presented by AEG, that challenges the world’s top professional cycling teams to compete along a demanding course through the state from May 15-22. For more information about the Amgen Tour of California, please visit www.amgentourofcalifornia.com.