The final stage of the Amgen Tour of California will start in San Francisco and end with two laps around downtown Santa Rosa, a route that will take riders through some of the most beautiful scenery the North Coast has to offer.
Although not the most challenging stage, the beauty of the Pacific Coast Highway, the likelihood of a sprint finish and the fact it will be the last chance for riders and teams to get TV coverage should make it a fitting finale.
"When you have a medium-category day, it means all 120-odd riders will be racing," said Glen Mitchell, manager of the Santa Rosa-based Bissell Pro Cycling Team, which has participated in the tour since 2007.
The route of the eight-day Tour of California, starting for the first time in Southern California and working north to end in Santa Rosa, was announced Tuesday.
The race begins May 12 with a stage within Escondido and follows with stages from Murrieta to Greater Palm Springs, Palmdale to Santa Clarita, Santa Clarita to Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara to Avila Beach, a San Jose time trial and then a stage that starts in Livermore and has a mountaintop finish on Mount Diablo.