Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Tour of California gran fondos: "Breakaway Ride"

Cycling enthusiasts and fans are invited to participate in Breakaway Ride presented by Specialized, two riding events held in conjunction with the upcoming 2010 Amgen Tour of California professional cycling race set for May 16-23, 2010. Both rides will be held in April 2010 (one month prior to the 2010 Amgen Tour of California) and will serve to raise awareness and funds for Amgen’s Breakaway from Cancer® initiative, which aims to raise awareness of the comprehensive array of resources available to cancer patients — from prevention to education, and patient care to advocacy and financial support.

Each ‘Breakaway Ride’ gives cycling enthusiasts the opportunity to ride the actual route of the 2010 Amgen Tour of California. Three distances will be offered for each ride to accommodate various skill levels; the longest distance covers the same route that the pros will ride (an entire stage). Riders will be chip timed and supported, with a maximum of 3,500 riders per event.

The two Breakaway Ride dates are:
Sunday April 11, 2010 - Stage 8 route – Thousand Oaks/Westlake Village/Agoura Hills
Sunday, April 25, 2010 - Stage 2 route – Davis to Santa Rosa

Thousand Oaks, Westlake Village and Agoura Hills Ride:
It is well known that the Santa Monica Mountains provide some of the best riding in the United States: Just north of Los Angeles, you can find 2,000 foot climbs from the ocean to Mulholland Highway on the top. Stage 8 of the 2010 Amgen Tour of California will incorporate one of California’s iconic rides: The Rock Store loop. The famous Rock Store climb ascends Mulholland Highway and proceeds along the summit ridge with views to the ocean and Valley. Gorgeous and challenging, this is a quintessential Santa Monica Mountains loop.

Davis to Santa Rosa Ride:
The long ride will start in California’s Central Valley and will head west into the mountains and valleys of Napa and Sonoma County. The ride will pass by some of the most famous and iconic wineries and appellations in the world. Don’t be fooled by the charm of the wineries and the vines: The route will also have some of Northern California’s most legendary climbs. The full route will be a beautiful, tough and satisfying day on the bike.

Santa Rosa will be the start location for the short course of approximately 40 miles and the intermediate course of approximately 65 miles. The routes will travel out of Santa Rosa, will pick up the Amgen Tour of California route back to Santa Rosa. Both the short and intermediate distance rides will have a combination of rolling hills and at least one serious climb.

Three distances will be available: about of 30 miles (short course), 55 miles (medium), and 80 miles (long course). The famous Rock Store climb will be included in all distances.

A portion of each rider’s entry fee will be donated to Breakaway from Cancer’s charitable partners. Additionally, riders will have the opportunity to earn gifts and prizes by raising additional funds for the Breakaway from Cancer charitable partners. Prize packages include VIP experiences at the 2010 Amgen Tour of California and a top-of-the-line Specialized Tarmac or Roubaix bike for each ride’s top fundraiser.

Registration closes at 3,500 participants per ride. Details on transportation options will be announced on February 1st, 2010. See for all details.

I have updated the USA gran fondo calendar here.

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  1. I'm a totally novice cyclist training for the Stage 2 Breakaway on April 25th... I've been trying to get more information about the event like what kind of support will be offered, and whether this is a good ride for a beginner (probably not, it seems), etc etc., but the race organizers still haven't gotten back to me. Do you have any additional info? Do you know the answers to my questions above? Any insight you may have would be greatly appreciated!!!

  2. Laura: I can't help you with contacting the organizer. re: I think the short ride might be toooo short at 22 miles. The 110 mile would be too hard. I'd suggest the medium distance of 50 miles. Will give you a good training goal and a sense of satisfaction.