Tour of California starts 11:15 a.m. today, comes through Ramona

Sunday, May 12—The eight-day, nearly 750-mile Tour of California, the nation’s largest cycling event, begins today with a 102.6-mile stage beginning and ending in Escondido and including more than 11,000 feet of climbing.

The stage is set to begin at 11:15 a.m. at Broadway and Grand Avenue, heading on winding state Route 78 to Ramona and Santa Ysabel before a climb up Palomar Mountain and a return to Escondido.

“We wanted to start with a unique twist,” said Kristin Bachochin, the race’s executive director. “Palomar Mountain is a top categorized climb so fireworks will go off early in the race.”

Ramonans wanting to watch the race should position themselves early along Main Street from 10th to Third, longtime cyclist and Ramona resident Joe Cahak says.

The racers will be coming up State Route 78 from Escondido, turning at 10th, riding to Third, where they will take the Old Julian Highway back to 78 to Santa Ysabel to Palomar.

“The Highway 78 grade from San Pasqual is nothing to these guys,” Cahak said this morning, explaining they average 20 to 25 mph climbing, 25 to 40 mph on straightaways and 50 to 60 mph downhill.

“That’s the level of athletic ability these guys are doing,” he said. “This is phenomenal.”

This is the first time since 2009 the race will include San Diego County. This is the first time in its eight-year history the race is being run from south to north.

“Taking the Amgen Tour of California from south to north is something we always knew we wanted to do,” Bachochin said. “We think this will bring a whole new element to the competition for the elite cyclists who participate, not to mention some striking California scenery for our worldwide audience.

“California provides a variety of beautiful yet challenging terrains, helping us achieve our goal of creating a challenging route year after year while showcasing the very best this state has to offer.”

The field includes 2010 Tour de France champion Andy Schleck, 10 other riders who have won stages in the Tour de France, seven world champions and 11 current national champions.

Monday’s second stage goes from Murrieta to Hemet, down the curvy and spectacular Highway 74 into Palm Desert before finishing at the base station of the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway.

The race is set to conclude next Sunday in Santa Rosa.

Related posts:

  1. Caltrans warns of traffic delays this weekend due to Amgen bike tour
  2. Professional cycling race puts Ramona in its route
  3. Amgen Bike Tour comes through Ramona Sunday; expect traffic delays this weekend
  4. Chamber plans to promote town during Amgen bike race
  5. County, planning group invite public to tour emergency evacuation route

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Posted by Maureen Robertson on May 12 2013. Filed under Backcountry, Featured Story, News, Ramona. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

4 Comments for “Tour of California starts 11:15 a.m. today, comes through Ramona”

  1. Pat

    Please, next time take your race someplace else. The disruption for traffic, mother's day obligations, church and so on was not a nice start to the day. My mother had to walk home from 7-11 because we could not get into her neighborhood. When I find out how this mess was approved the people responsible will not get a vote from me…ever.

  2. Native Ramonan

    Oh wah wah wah! Notices went up two weeks ago. I live in the areaa impacted and made my plans accordingly. But as usual it doesn't apply to everyone and when you are inconvenienced for a little bit you belly ache. This was a great event for the region. And guess what. It's over with! Get over it!

  3. Rose Remmler

    I was stuck in a line of cars going up the mountain waiting for the 4 who were in the lead and then another wait for the rest of the pack to catch up…We counted 22 motorcycle cops…12 police cars and various other vehicles..I am sure there were many more…Overtime pay?? .Who PAID for all of that????

  4. Pat

    I'm glad you feel that way NR. Next year you have the whole thing in Ramona!

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