Stage details for the eight-day 2014 Tour of California and the list of teams taking part this May was revealed by the race’s organiser on Friday.
Much of the general classification-shaping action takes place in the first three days, with the individual time trial taking place on stage two and the ‘queen’ mountain stage the following day on stage three – which is also the longest of the race at 110 miles.
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Stage six also features a mountain-top finish, ensuring that the riders with an eye on the leader’s jersey will have to stay sharp throughout the duration of the UCI 2.HC-ranked event. Every road stage features a categorised climb, and the total climbing in the race exceeds 40,000 feet.
“Every year we look to incorporate new destinations, as well as vary technical aspects of the race,” said Kristin Bachochin, executive director of the Tour of California.
“With the time trial on day two, followed by the most difficult course the next day, we’ve set the stage for thrills early in the race. There are no easy days, and teams will have to be strategic about when to take the lead and how to protect their positions through the rest of the week, so we’ll see some really exciting racing to the end.”
British fans will be keeping an eye out for 2012 Tour de France champion Bradley Wiggins (Sky), who has marked out this year’s Tour of California as a target. Last year, the race was won by Tejay van Garderen (BMC Racing).
Sky and BMC Racing are among the 16 teams lining up for the 2014 edition of the race, which includes nine WorldTour-level squads, three Professional Continental outfits and four Continental teams.
Tour of California 2014: Stages
Stage 1, Sunday, May 11 – Sacramento to Sacramento, 123 miles
Stage 2, Monday, May 12 – Folsom (Individual Time Trial), 12.5 miles
Stage 3, Tuesday, May 13 – San Jose to Mount Diablo State Park, 110 miles
Stage 4, Wednesday, May 14 – Monterey to Cambria, 105 miles
Stage 5, Thursday, May 15 – Pismo Beach to Santa Barbara, 108 miles
Stage 6, Friday, May 16 – Santa Clarita to Mountain High, 97 miles
Stage 7, Saturday, May 17 – Santa Clarita to Pasadena, 91 miles
Stage 8, Sunday, May 18 – Thousand Oaks (Circuit Race), 84 miles
Total: 740 miles
Tour of California 2014: Teams
Belkin Pro Cycling Team, Netherlands
BMC Racing Team, USA
Cannondale Pro Cycling, Italy
Omega Pharma–QuickStep Cycling Team, Belgium
Team Giant-Shimano, Netherlands
Team Garmin-Sharp, USA
Team Sky, Great Britain
Trek Factory Racing, USA
UCI Professional Continental Teams
UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team, USA
Team Novo Nordisk, USA
Team NetApp-Endura, Germany
UCI Continental Teams
Optum Pro Cycling presented by Kelly Benefit Strategies, USA
Team Jamis-Hagens Berman presented by Sutter Home, USA
Jelly Belly Cycling Team presented by MAXXIS, USA
Bissell Development Team, USA
Sir Bradley Wiggins has singled out the Tour of California in May as one of his targets for the season,
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Tour of California 2013, stage 8: Peter Sagan takes final stage victory as Tejay van Garderen seals overall win