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  Club Trip: Tour of California: Stage 2 - 02/20/07

Earlier this year we had our club calendar planning event.  We've done this a few times now and at the top of our list was the Tour of California.  We thought it would be a great event for our club to start off the year.  The closer we got the more exciting it was to read about the event and who would be there. 

On the morning of the event a few of us rode from Roseville to Downtown Sacramento via the North Loop trail.  Others were going to drive down and meet us there.  And then others would ride in from work to meet us there as well.  The weather wasn't perfect but considering it was the middle of February it wasn't bad at all.  It was an overcast day with a bit of wind and just a hair on the cold side.  Nothing to complain about since the week before was wet and cold.

Upon arriving downtown we made our way around the many vendors and tents that lines the State Capitol.  It was great to see all this cycling stuff all over the place.  We were able to meet and greet with even the biggest of celebs. 

We made our way to the finish line and nestled in for a bit.  They had these large monitors along the main drag so you could sit there and watch the riders on the monitors as they came into Winters, then Davis, and then West Sacramento, and then across the tower bridge.  There were helicopters overhead so we knew they were close.  Then the race officials would start to come in across the finish line.  The streets were getting packed with crowds now.  There had to be tens of thousands. 

Then you could hear the crowds yelling and screaming down the way as they made the turn.  For me it was exciting because I had never been to such an event.  I didn't know what it would be like.  But for those that want to know what it's like to watch it I have one word, "blur."  That's right, watching cyclists on the finish line is like watching a blur.  That's because they come through at 35 mph.  The only good thing was that because this was the finish line they were doing a circuit of 3 miles.  So they had them go around a course of about 3 miles, this meant they would pass in front of us 4 times.  As they came through it was like a freight train, one big woosh!  It was just awesome to see these guys fly by, to hear them roar, and then feel the wind.  Too cool for words.  The most amazing thing was not that they were doing 35 mph, it was the fact that on the final sprint they were doing almost 40 mph. 

On the way home we tried a 30 mph sprint, with the wind, we were able to do it, not for long but we did.  I can't imagine being able to sprint at 40 mph and holding it. 

This was a truly amazing event and we hope they bring it through Sacramento again next year, if so we'll be there routing them on.

Riders for this trip:
Connie Hathaway
Devin Holmes
Dave White
Met us there:
Dave Ferrell
Michael Ferrell
Chris Gale

Pictures from the ride:

You had vendor tents all along the front of the capitol, here is my favorite. The route circled the State Capitol. People started to gather about 1 pm to get a good place. They had a large screen TV that we could watch the race in progress. Around 2 pm it started to get crowded. 

At the 200 meter mark the first of the pack comes racing in. As fast as they come, there they go... Mavic Tires!  May I have two please! More team cars bringing up the rear. CHP bringin up the last rider.
Lap two and they're going just as fast! Lap three is just a blur as they scream by doing 35 mph. One more lap to go. On the last lap you can see they've spread out on the sprint. Dave took this picture down and the corner, no gate to hold him back.  Watch your toes!
Michael and Floyd talking it up. Glen, his daughter, and the Specialized Angel.