Tour of California to zip through city streets in May

The world’s fastest cyclists will zip through San Francisco’s hills May 18 in the third leg of the Amgen Tour of California, arguably America’s most important and prestigious bike race.

The 16 host cities were announced Thursday morning through a Twitter exchange between Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and cyclists Lance Armstrong, Levi Leipheimer, Dave Zabriskie and George Hincapie.

“The governor essentially put out a challenge directly to Lance Armstrong via tweet,” said Michael Roth, spokesman for the tour.
Organizers have made two major changes to the five-year-old race — moving its start from February to May 16, and including the Sierras and Sequoia National Forest along the 750-mile route.

“It was a big decision for us. To continue to grow, we really needed to be able to showcase the whole of California,” said AEG Sports President Andrew Messick in a Thursday morning conference call. 

The switch to a more temperate mid-season race allows cyclists to ride along a more varied backdrop. It also offers increased conditioning for cyclists who plan to go on to the Tour de France in July, Messick said. The first leg of the race will be Nevada City to Sacramento; then Davis to Santa Rosa. Cyclists will arrive in San Francisco on day three of the eight-day race, starting at the Embarcadero and following the Bay-to-Breakers course to the Great Highway, where they will ride on to the finish line near the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. The tour’s San Francisco stop comes two days after Bay to Breakers.

Cities new to the race include Nevada City, Bakersfield, Big Bear Lake, Los Angeles and the final stop at Thousand Oaks/Westlake Village/Agoura Hills.

The seven-time Tour de France winner Armstrong and three-time defending Amgen Tour of California champ Leipheimer are expected to draw throngs of fans. Armstrong will ride with his newly formed Team RadioShack.

CaliforniaCalifornia Newssports

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

A sign about proposed development of the bluff at Thornton State Beach in Daly City on Friday, Feb. 26, 2021. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Retreat center proposed at popular state beach

Daly City residents oppose construction on ocean bluffs

Rev. Roland Gordon shows “The Great Cloud of Witnesses” collage mural at the Ingleside Presbyterian Church, which he began building in 1980.<ins> (</ins>
Rev. Roland Gordon preaches love in action

Pastor promotes peace, hope through art and prayer

Basketball (Shutterstock)
SI alum Begovich gets his moment, but Stanford falls on Senior Day

MAPLES PAVILION — Generally speaking, Stanford’s home finale on Saturday afternoon, a… Continue reading

U.S. Attorney David Anderson announces federal firearms charges against two men for their roles in a March 2019 shooting outside the Fillmore Heritage Center in a news conference alongside SFPD staff at the Phillip Burton Federal Building on Thursday, Jan. 9, 2020. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Departing U.S. attorney predicts corruption probe will continue

David Anderson shook up City Hall as top federal prosecutor

Board of Supervisors President Shamann Walton, a former school board member, has been asked to help secure an agreement between the school district and teacher’s union. <ins>(Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)</ins>
 <ins></ins>
Supervisor Walton tapped to mediate teacher contract talks

District and union at odds over hours in-person students should be in the classroom

Most Read