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Liquigas' Peter Sagan (1:27:36) picked up his fifth stage victory on the eighth and final stage of the 2012 Tour of California, but Robert Gesink kept the yellow jersey to win the general classification. He moved into the lead on Saturday after a climb to Mt. Baldy.
Garmin-Barracuda's Nathan Haas led the race during the final lap, but the peloton caught him early on. As it continued to make its way to the finish line, the peloton saw Sagan make his move in the final few meters of the race and edged out Tom Boonen for the victory.
Here is how the top five of the general classification shook out:
1. Robert Gesink, Rabobank
2. David Zabriskie, Garmin-Barracuda, +0:46
3. Tom Danielson, Garmin-Barracuda, +0:54
4. Tejay Van Garderen, BMC, +1:17
5. Fabio Andres Duarte, Colombia Coldeportes, +1:36
The 2012 Tour of California comes to an end on Sunday with a ride from Beverly Hills to downtown Los Angeles in what should be a publicity run for the tour. Barring some rather odd events taking place on the road, Robert Gesink will wear the yellow jersey at the end of the day after taking it on the trek to Mt. Baldy on Saturday.
As Gesink and the rest of the cyclists make the final ride (map), the course will visit Rodeo Drive, Santa Monica Boulevard and Sunset Boulevard before entering Hollywood. After visiting the sites in Hollywood, the riders will go past Dodger Stadium before heading into the final five miles that lap around downtown L.A. The finish line comes right by the Staples Center and L.A. Live.
Should the standings hold up and Gesink take the yellow jersey, Garmin-Barracuda's David Zabriskie (+0:45) and Tom Danielson (+0:54) should finish in second- and third-place.
Start time: 11:10 a.m. MT
Expected finish: 12:50 p.m. MT
TV: NBC Sports, 11:00 a.m. MT (live)
Dutchman Robert Gesink has snared the lead in the 2012 Tour of California after an impressive finish in the mountainous Stage 7. With Darwin Atapuma Hurtado close on his trail, Gesink finished with an impressive 3:37:08 finish, pushing his total time to a first-place 29:14:52.
With a 46-second deficit, David Zabrinske of the Colorado-based Garmin-Barracuda comes in at second place in the overall standings heading into the final stage. Here's a league at the Stage 7 top ten, courtesy of CyclingFans.com:
|2||Darwin ATAPUMA HURTADO||COL||COL||+0|
|3||Fabio Andres DUARTE AREVALO||COL||COL||+14|
|10||Tejay VAN GARDEREN||USA||BMC||+1:22|
And here is a look at the overall leaderboard after Stage 7:
|2||David ZABRISKIE||United States||GRM||+46|
|3||Thomas DANIELSON||United States||GRM||+54|
|4||Tejay VAN GARDEREN||United States||BMC||+1:17|
|5||Fabio Andres DUARTE AREVALO||Colombia||COL||+1:36|
|6||Levi LEIPHEIMER||United States||OPQ||+2:13|
|8||Christopher HORNER||United States||RNT||+2:49|
The 2012 Tour of California will most likely be decided at the end of Stage 7 when the riders reach Mt. Baldy, which is over 6,300 feet in elevation and a tough summit to reach (map). The day starts in Ontario and soon moves into a long climb, but the first King of the Mountain section comes right after the initial climb. Once atop Glendora Ridge Road, the cyclists begin a 12-mile descent along twisting roads.
After another descent, the riders make their way into the city of Glendora for the lone sprint section of the day. Once they escape that area, the two remaining King of the Mountain Climbs remain, Glendora Mountain Road and the switchback-laden Mt. Baldy.
Garmin-Barracuda's David Zabriskie holds a 34 second lead over BMC's Tejay Van Garderen in the general classification, but these climbs could be his undoing.
Start time: 1:00 p.m. MT
Expected finish time: 4:57 p.m. MT
TV: NBC Sports Network, 5 p.m. MT (delayed coverage)
France's Syvain Georges won Stage 6 of the 2012 Tour of California on Friday, beating out Peter Sagan, among others, in the sprint to the finish. Sagan won the first four stages of the race.
|6||Greg VAN AVERMAET||BEL||BMC||+28|
|9||Tejay VAN GARDEREN||USA||BMC||+28|
Garmin-Barracuda's David Zabriskie still holds the overall lead.
One day after the individual time trial in Bakersfield, the 2012 Tour of California offers a grueling challenge from Palmdale to Big Bear Lake for Stage 6. The course itself is just 115.7 miles long, but the cyclists will face four climbs and plenty of elevation (map).
The first climb of the day comes at Mt. Emma just 12 miles or so into the race. The real challenge comes after that at Angeles Crest Highway, a 7,000-foot summit after a 12-mile climb. The riders eventually descend several thousand feet down before making the next climb at Highway 138, about 75 miles into the course. Another 10 miles later, the last climb comes at Highway 18. But even at 6,000 feet in elevation at this point, the course still has more elevation to give. The cyclists will ascend to over 7,000 feet once again before falling just below that mark as they approach Big Bear Lake.
Garmin-Barracuda's David Zabriskie now wears the yellow jersey and leads the general classification following his victory on Stage 5. He holds 34-second lead over Tejay Van Garderen. Garmin teammates Andrew Talansky and Tom Danielson are 48 seconds and 1:07 behind Zabriskie, respectively.
Start time: 11:25 a.m. MT
Projected finish time: 4:49 p.m. MT
TV: NBC Sports Network, 3:00 p.m .MT
Peter Sagan's string of stage victories in the 2012 Tour of California ended on Thursday when David Zabriskie (Garmin-Barracuda) emerged to take the Stage 5 win. Sagan finished three minutes and 27 seconds behind Zabriskie, in 52nd place.
Zabriskie wasn't the only member of Garmin-Barracuda to have a good showing on Thursday: Andrew Talansky finished fifth and Tom Danielson finished ninth. Here is the complete Stage 5 top 10:
|3||Tejay VAN GARDEREN||USA||BMC||+34|
The 2012 Tour of California heads to Bakersfield on Thursday with an individual time trial through Bakersfield. This will be an 18.4 mile run from Mt. Vernon Ave. at Alfred Harrell Highway to Panorama Dr. A single racer should take anywhere from 36 minutes to 42 minutes to finish Stage 5. There will be a slight climb to the finish line but nothing too challenging.
Peter Sagan will look to win his fifth stage, but he may want to rest for Friday's stage, which ends at Big Bear Lake. Sagan owns a 16-second lead over Garmin-Barracuda's Heinrich Haussler. Could this be the day Haussler overtakes Sagan or will the other riders -- none closer than 34 seconds -- close the gap and emerge with the yellow jersey?
Start time: 2:00 p.m. MT
Expected finish (last racer): 4:55 p.m. MT
TV: NBC Sports Network, 3:00 p.m. MT
If someone else wants to win the 2012 Tour of California, it would be in that person's best interest to break the stride of Liquigas-Cannondale's Peter Sagan sometime soon. On Wednesday, Sagan won his fourth consecutive stage of the race. Austria's Heinrich Haussler has now finished second in all four stages.
Here's a look at the top 10 finishers from Stage 4 today.
Liquigas-Cannondale's Peter Sagan has had his way with the 2012 Tour of California, winning all three stages up to this point. Will that continue in Wednesday's Stage 4, which is the longest of the race?
Tuesday's stage, which covers 130 miles, will take the riders from Sonora to Clovis.
As the riders head south towards Mariposa and Oakhurst (both Sprint cities), they will enjoy the incredible beauty and challenge of historic Highway 49. As they skirt Yosemite, they will encounter everything from numerous KOMs, twisty and technical descents, and raging rivers, but very few sections of flat roadway. Once through Mariposa, Highway 49 widens a bit, but two more KOMs will await the cyclists as they head to the final Sprint in Oakhurst. The riders will no doubt be fearless as they attack the final 40 miles into the return to Clovis, perhaps recalling the snow and ice along this same route in 2009.
Live television coverage of the race begins at 3:00 p.m. MT on the NBC Sports Network. Additional Stage 4 information, including a map of the route, can be found here.
There isn't much that has gotten in the way of Liquigas-Cannondale's Peter Sagan during the 2012 Tour of California; his victory in Tuesday's Stage 3 made him three-for-three so far this year. The top 10 finishers today:
|8||Koen DE KORT||NED||ARG||+0|
Garmin-Barracuda's Heinrich Haussler has been right there with Sagan throughout the Tour of California and remains in second place overall.
So far, the 2012 Tour of California has belonged to Peter Sagan, who has one the first two stages. Stage 3 begins on Tuesday and will take the riders from San Jose to Livermore. This stage includes a climb up Mt. Diablo:
Just 28 miles into the race, the riders will contest a challenging Sprint to the finish but the race will just be getting started. Heading out north on Livermore Avenue, the riders will likely face a stiff headwind coming down the valley. After passing through the town of Danville, the Amgen Tour of California will grant a wish that has been made for the past six years by riders and fans, "Please climb Mt. Diablo." For the first time in the history of the race, the riders will climb Mt. Diablo. One of the most revered climbs in California, race organizers, cyclists and fans alike are excited to have this climb as part of Stage 3 of the 2012 race.
Among the cyclists who will be looking to overtake Sagan is Garmin-Barracuda's Heinrich Haussler, who sits in second place overall.
For more details on the third stage including a map, visit this Stage 3 info page.
Peter Sagan (Liquigas-Cannondale) followed up his win in Stage 1 by taking Stage 2 on Monday afternoon, maintaining his position as the overall race leader. Sagan finished the second stage with a time of 5:02:00 and was followed by Heinrich Haussler of Garmin-Barracuda in second place and Leigh Howard of Orica GreenEdge Cycling team in third place.
Sagan also picked up a 10-second time bonus for the victory.
The riders will resume on Tuesday for Stage 3, which will take them from San Jose to Livermore. The third stage covers 185.5 kilometers (115.3 miles), so it is similar in length to the second stage. For a map of the stage and other particulars, head over to this Stage 3 information page.
Peter Sagan of Liquigas-Cannondale enters Stage 2 of the 2012 AMGEN Tour of California with high hopes after capturing the yellow jersey on Stage 1's route through Santa Rosa and then Sonoma County. On Monday, Sagan and the rest of the field will start in San Francisco's Marina District and head south on Highway 1 until turning inward around Santa Cruz. That marks the two King of the Mountains climbs the riders will deal with this time around.
The first test will be on the Bonny Doon, which reaches over 2,500 feet in elevation. Once the cyclists make it past there, they still need to get through another 2,000-plus feet mountain as they make their way to Aptos. Once that obstacle is overcome, the last 25 miles or so are downhill. In all, 117.1 miles will be covered on Monday.
Garmin-Barracuda had a good showing after Stage 1. Heinrich Haussler is in second place, trailing by four seconds. Andrew Talansky, Tom Danielson, David Zabriskie and Alex Howes are all 10 seconds behind and still great shape to compete until the final finish line next Sunday.
Check out the complete map of Stage 2 here (PDF). NBC Sports Network will once again have live coverage of this event at 3:00 p.m. MT. The race begins at 12:00 p.m. MT and is expected to end around 4:53 p.m. MT.
The opening stage of the Tour of California is officially in the books, with Peter Sagan of Slovakia and Team Liquigas-Cannondale winning it at 4:32:35. Heinrich Haussler finished in second, while Fred Rodriguez, Leigh Howard and Greg Van Avervaet rounded out the top five.
It was a day of mixed results from Tom Danielson and his Garmin-Barracuda teammates. Haussler delivered an impressive race and finished in second place. However, the next highest finisher was Andrew Talansky, who finished in 26th. Danielson, who finished in third place in this event in 2011, sits in 34th following the opening stage.
Three Americans finished the opening stage in the Top 10, with Rodriguez of Team Exergy finishing in third. George Hincapie of BMC Racing Team finished in 6th, while Lawson Craddock from Bontrager Livestrong Team finished the opening stage in 9th place.
The 2012 Tour of California gets underway on Sunday afternoon and runs until next Sunday. The NBC family of networks will have extensive television coverage of the race, with most of it airing on the NBC Sports Network.
Stage 1 Date & Time: Sunday, May 13, 3:00 p.m. MT
TV: NBC Sports Network
The NBC Sports Network is slated to televise Stages 1 through 7 and NBC will air the eighth and final stage on May 20. Additionally, the entire race can be streamed online at the official Tour of California web site.
Additional information on the race this week, from maps and standings to news and team descriptions, can also be found at the official site.
It's time for the 2012 AMGEN Tour of California to start and Garmin-Barracuda's Tom Danielson is out to improve upon his third-place finish in 2011. He and the rest of the field kick things off on Sunday afternoon with a route through Santa Rosa and then out and about in Sonoma County that lasts for 115.9 miles.
After two loops around the city, the cyclists head out to the mountains and then eventually will see the coast line. But this won't just be a scenic route to start the race. This stage will feature a couple of sprint sections as well as four King of the Mountain sections (Cazadero Highway, Ft. Ross Road (twice) and Coleman Valley Road). Ft. Ross Road presents the toughest challenge of the day, reaching a peak elevation of over 1,600 feet (PDF map of elevations).
Check out a full map of this course here.
Stage 1 of the race begins at 11:50 a.m. MT and will close out approximately at 4:49 p.m. MT. NBC Sports Network will have live coverage of the event at 3:00 p.m. MT.
The 2012 Tour of California begins in earnest on Sunday with Stage 1's ride through Santa Rosa. The cyclists will start with a couple of loops around Santa Rosa-proper before leaving for the rest of Sonoma County. The marks the real beginning of this 115.9 mile race. Through the ride in Sonoma, the cyclists will face a couple of sprints and four climbs.
The race will start at 11:50 a.m. MT and finish around 4:49 p.m. MT, which should certainly have the makings of an exciting finish to Day 1. The weather is expected to be partly cloudy and have a high of 79-degrees Fahrenheit. There is zero percent chance of rain.
Television coverage for the Tour begins on NBC Sports Network at 2:00 p.m. MT on Sunday with a preview of this year's race. Just 60 minutes later, live coverage of the race begins, which will have the last two hours or so of the race.
The 2012 AMGEN Tour of California begins on Sunday. Can Garmin-Barracuda's Tom Danielson pick up the race victory?
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