Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Amgen Tour of California - Sierra Road

Climb up Sierra Road
Discovery Leads the chase up Sierra Road - Stage 2

Today the Amgen Tour of California rode through our back yard. It really was a thrill to see the world's best cyclists hammering up the very hill I climbed just the day before. Sierra is a tough climb rising 2000 feet in under 4 miles. It took me 39 minutes to climb it. The pros would climb it in 20 minutes.

I had no idea just how big this event would be and I certainly was surprised. As we waited on Sierra for the race to arrive the road gradually began to fill with hundreds of spectators. Jon and I had positioned ourselves about 1/3 of the way up and found a good spot to catch the action. A steep right hand turn. From our vantage point we could see down to the intersection of Sierra and Piedmont roads where the racers would turn left and start the climb.

People with cell phones getting updates on the peleton's progress... They're 30 minutes away! Then suddenly the skies filled with helicopters, motor cycles, police cars honking their horns and camera crews all whizzing by. It was like an invasion. Then the leaders on the climb. Yes with the same cross eyed brain dead look that marks the absolute concentration required to climb a 13% grade at 13+ mph at your HRMAX. Savoldelli, Hindcapie, Simoni all fly by. WOW.

Here are my photos from the stage

From the Bike
From the bike

Richard Treadway

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