My dad and brother flew into town last weekend to spectate a few days of the Tour of California, and I helped them. The Tour of California is a professional bicycling race in it’s third year. It’s like the Tour de France… but significantly less grueling (the Tour de France is really freaking ridiculous). None of my pictures are really amazing, but hopefully they’ll give you an idea of what the race is like.
The prologue is the first day of the race. It’s a short, solo time-trial that serves two purposes: it showcases each rider and introduces them to the fans, and it sets the pecking order for the upcoming race. This year’s prologue started in downtown Palo Alto and finished 2.1 miles later near the focal point of Stanford’s campus: the oval. Emily’s sister and her husband came down from Sacramento and the six of us watched the race near the finish line.
Stage 1: Sausalito to Santa Rose
My dad and brother and I drove up to Santa Rose on Monday to watch the end of stage 1, which was 96.8 miles. At the end of the stage they looped through downtown Santa Rosa three times before crossing the finish line. There were a lot of people watching.
Stage 2: Santa Rose to Sacramento
For stage 2 we woke up before the race started and drove to the top of the mountain between Sonoma County and Napa Valley, and we waited for about two hours for the riders to cross. It rained a little bit while we waited, but it was still pretty sweet.
The riders continued to wind their way down California over the next week to the finish in Pasadena, but we didn’t watch any other stages. The final stage was on Sunday, and Levi Leipheimer took the overall win.