Category Archives: 2012 ATOC
AMGEN Tour of California #ATOC: Stage 07 – Ontario

The closer we got to Los Angeles during the AMGEN Tour of California, the more fun the days became. We woke up bright and early in LA and drove out to Azusa. From there, we parked and rode up towards Baldy. Words cannot express how much fun this ride was. We climbed as high as we could before the course started to get closed down, totaling around 35 miles and 4,600′ of elevation.

Hennie, the Rapha Mobile Cycle Club was parked at the first KOM, so our group arrived and the party had already been raging. I can’t describe the afternoon, so I’ll let the photos do the talking!

Click on the above photo to launch the gallery, or here to open in a new tab.

Edit: I’ve added the Previous posts for the #ATOC below…

May 20, 2012 18 comments
AMGEN Tour of California #ATOC: Stage 06 – Palmdale

After covering the AMGEN Tour of California, for almost a week now, the last thing I wanted to do was get back to work. Waking up, bright and early, gets harder and harder each morning. Yesterday was no exception to this either. We ended up rolling out of our luxurious suite at the Motel 6 a few hours later than anticipated. As we scrambled to find the second KOM, we quickly realized that the peloton had already blown through the gate there. The tailwind was no joke apparently…

What was left to check out before the finish was the feed zone. This is where the racers and support vehicles can re-up on food and water, via their musettes. Once they’ve finished stuffing the treats into their jersey pockets, the bags and bottles are discarded on the road. Let’s see, free stuff and cool photos? Sure.

After some re-routing through the desert, we found ourselves at the base of the climb up to refueling station. The action came and left within minutes, sending us on a sprint to the finish in our vehicle. The 20 mile drive up to Big Bear Lake is breathtaking. Winding roads with little or no shoulder makes it less than ideal for cyclists but the views are stunning out across the range.

Once you make it up the mountain a ways, the roads widen and we found ourselves passing cyclists (and other attractions) every other bend. Meanwhile, a Frenchman had broken away from the peloton. But would he make it?

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May 19, 2012 10 comments
AMGEN Tour of California #ATOC: Stage 05 – Bakersfield

After four grueling days of stage racing, the AMGEN Tour of California found its way into Bakersfield. After a late night, we woke up at 5am and embarked on a local’s loop. Let me tell you, there’s nothing better than waking up to a hammerfest out to the foothills.

We were done before the temperatures spiked into the 90’s and tallied up 60 miles with about 3,800′ of climbing. After a quick shower, the Rapha sprinter van and Mobile Cycling Club headed over to the ATOC TT where the crowds stuck to the shade and the sun beat down on the racers and spectators. Seriously, it was hot!

Once again, I found myself in a team car, this time following Chris Jones of UnitedHealthcare. Chris had the unfortunate experience of wrecking on the first day, sending him to the hospital for 20 stitches after a spoke lacerated his leg. But this didn’t stop him from continuing the tour and today, his perseverance was evident as he tore through the time trial course.

Once the day had ended, we headed further south to Palmdale. While en route, we ended up driving through a massive windfarm…

Click on the above photo to launch the gallery, or here to open in a new tab.

May 18, 2012 11 comments
AMGEN Tour of California #ATOC: Stage 04 – Sonora

Yesterday was a hot one. As we’re moving south with the AMGEN Tour of California the temperatures are rising. We spent the night in Sonora and woke up to the start of the race. After the group took off, we loaded the sprinter van up and headed to the finish. Driving through the California farmland was beautiful.

At the finish, we were greeted with the quaint town of Clovis for the finish. As expected, Peter Sagan seized another victory…

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May 17, 2012 16 comments
AMGEN Tour of California #ATOC: Stage 03 – San Jose

After only shooting the start of the AMGEN Tour of California yesterday, today I was glad to be out on the course. My good friend Jeremy Dunn ensured that I got to ride in one of the SRAM support vehicles. We were in a caravan of about 20 cars, as the peloton chased down the break through the mountains. The biggest prick on the elevation map was Mt. Diablo and as the temperatures rose throughout the day, it was surely hell for the racers.

While I didn’t have the chance to hop out of the car and frame any shots, the audience and super fans provided more than enough entertainment as we drove through some of the most beautiful countryside California has to offer. Oh and descending in a team car is something else. Wow.

Click on the above photo to launch the gallery, or here to open in a new tab.

May 16, 2012 25 comments
AMGEN Tour of California #ATOC: Stage 02 – San Francisco

This morning I found myself walking up to the second stage of the AMGEN Tour of California not knowing what to expect. I didn’t attend the opening day in Santa Rosa, nor did I experience the Sunday afternoon crowds that flooded the city, so I had no idea what awaited in San Francisco.

SF is a cycling-savvy city, to say the least and the reception, especially on a Monday morning, was warm. Each team’s caravans bustled on the inside, as their bikes were neatly leaned against the side. Fans walked up, commented on gear and patiently awaited for the athletes to leave their busses.

Once a team would exit, they were swarmed with fans, flashing their iPhones, interrupting them for a photo and it quickly became apparent that it was going to be an energetic morning. Rather than go too much more into it, I’ve compiled a nice Photoset, only of the start. We didn’t make it to stage itself, or the finish, but I’m happy with how these came out.

Click on the above photo to launch the gallery, or here to open in a new tab.

May 15, 2012 21 comments