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Amgen Tour of California Cyclists Start Stage 4 on Santa Barbara’s Waterfront

Annual race brings hundreds of cyclists and fans to the South Coast for the fourth stage of a 575-mile men's race down California

 

Equipped with cell phones clamped in their hands, more than 1,000 eager onlookers gathered at Santa Barbara's waterfront on Wednesday in hopes of capturing photos of world class cyclists at the annual Amgen Tour of California.

Under clear skies, cyclist fans all ages were heard cheering for the riders in the men's race at Santa Barbara's Stage 4 starting line on Cabrillo Boulevard between Garden and Calle Cesar Chavez streets.

In what seems like the blink of an eye, the bicyclists zipped down East Cabrillo Boulevard at 11:30 a.m.

The 99.1-mile course rolls through Montecito, Carpinteria, Ojai and Santa Paula along to the finish at Magic Mountain Parkway in Santa Clarita. 

The Santa Barbara route was one of the numerous panoramic sections along the course during the seven-stage cycling competition. The men’s event — which covers 575 miles through 12 cities — began May 11 in Sacramento and is set to finish Saturday in Pasadena.

Highlights during Stage 4 include two sprints, two King of the Mountain portions, and 7,700 feet of climbing. 

This year is the eighth time in the race’s 12-year history Santa Barbara has been a host city for a stage, according to the Amgen Tour of California. 

Supporting some of the world’s most accomplished cyclists was a Pleasanton, California resident who knew a thing or two about the competition.

Janet Sears held a cut-out poster of road race champion Peter Sagan, who holds the record of 15 Amgen Tour of California stage wins and the 2015 race title.

Pleasanton resident Janet Sears holds a cut-out of road race champion Peter Sagan at the Stage 4 starting line of the Amgen Tour of California’s Wednesday morning on Cabrillo Boulevard in Santa Barbara. Click to view larger
Pleasanton resident Janet Sears holds a cut-out of road race champion Peter Sagan at the Stage 4 starting line of the Amgen Tour of California’s Wednesday morning on Cabrillo Boulevard in Santa Barbara.  (Brooke Holland / Noozhawk photo)

Sears, a cyclist herself, has followed every Amgen Tour of California since its inception in 2006. This year she was joined by her husband. 

“I’ve been a fan forever,” Sears said. “One of our favorite trips is following the tour. Santa Barbara is a gorgeous place, and it is a beautiful setting for the start.”

The Tour de France-style cycling road race included 17 teams of eight cyclists representing 30 countries. The groups selected to participate have included Olympic medalists, Tour de France contenders and world champions, according to the Amgen Tour of California. 

The Amgen Breakaway from Heart Disease women’s race, traveling 250 miles from South Lake Tahoe to Sacramento, ended Sunday. 

Amgen, this year’s race sponsor, is a biotechnology company headquartered in Thousand Oaks, California.

Click here for a full list of results in the race. 

Noozhawk staff writer Brooke Holland can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

Amgen Tour of California race leader Rafal Majka, in the yellow jersey, turns onto State Route 150 during Wednesday’s Stage 4. Click to view larger
Amgen Tour of California race leader Rafal Majka, in the yellow jersey, turns onto State Route 150 during Wednesday’s Stage 4.  (Fritz Olenberger photo)

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