STAGE 7 - Claremont to Mt. Baldy, May 21
| If the Stage 6 individual time trial created some separation between the contenders and the chasers, Stage 7 will be the ultimate test of the rider’s resolve to capture the yellow jersey. Did they leave it all on the road in Solvang or did they hold back enough to survive one of the most difficult stages in the history of bicycle racing in the USA? It’s been called the Queen’s Stage and the first true mountain top finish in the Amgen Tour of California’s history. It has been compared to the epic stages of the European Grand Tours. This is the training ground for many of the local racers in southern California, but only a handful has done the entre route and none have done it after six days of racing over 700 miles! There is no question that the winner of the 2011 Amgen Tour of California will be decided on the final 15 switchbacks to the finish on Mt Baldy. |
The race begins in the college town of Claremont. The Claremont Colleges are universally regarded as one of the best college consortiums in the world. Two neutral circuits in Claremont will get the rider’s ready for the first climb of the day. Just 3.5 miles from the start, the riders will face an eight mile climb to the Village of Baldy and their first KOM. An acute left turn at the summit will provide them another mile of climbing up Glendora Ridge Road. From here they have 12 miles of narrow and twisting roads that gradually descend to a fast and technical descent down the backside of Glendora Mountain Rd. The vistas are spectacular throughout the Angeles National Forest. Another descent down East Fork will take the riders to Hwy 39 and the town of Azusa. Heading east, the race dips into the City of Glendora for the only Sprint of the day. At this point, the number of flat miles for Stage 7 has dwindled to less than two and there are still nearly 30 miles to the finish.
A left turn onto Glendora Mountain Road and it is “Game On”. The next KOM is a nine mile climb. That is followed by 12 miles of a slight climb back to Baldy Village. A left turn back onto Baldy Road will see the race gain 1,000’ in just three miles…and the real climbing has not even started! At Ice House Canyon, the route makes a hard left turn and the sign to the ski area points towards the sky. Over the next 2.5 miles, the riders will face 10 switchbacks on a road that is so steep that many of the race vehicles cannot make it to the top. At 1.2 miles to go, the road straightens out. The finish line can be seen ahead. At .25 miles to go, the route makes a hard left and the racers face a final five switchbacks to the finish line. This will be the stage where legends are made and winners are decided.
Stage 7 Spectator Guide
Stage Tips Brought to you
by the California Travel
& Tourism Commission
Stage 7 Results | Video | Press Release
Cloudy, 57 F
Sat - AM Clouds/PM Sun. High: 75 Low: 54
Sun - Mostly Sunny. High: 76 Low: 56
Full Forecast at Yahoo! Weather
(provided by The Weather Channel)