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Tour of California's Route Light on Downtown?

By Eric Richardson
Published: Tuesday, February 02, 2010, at 10:00AM
Levi power! Nico Sanchez [Flickr]

2009 Amgen Tour of California champion Levi Leipheimer rides a time trial in Sacramento.

Update (5pm): A representative from the Tour says that the route given is one that was under consideration, but not the route that will be used. The course was deemed too disruptive to traffic and residents.

Downtown will serve as the start and end point for Stage 7 in May's Amgen Tour of California, but don't expect to see professional cyclists whizzing up and down neighborhood streets.

The 120 participants in the May 22 time trial will instead start at L.A. Live and head west on Olympic, reaching the ocean in Venice before circling back to the entertainment complex.

The 8-stage race runs from May 16 - 23, making its way from Sacramento and the Bay Area to Los Angeles. It is owned by AEG, the developer of the L.A. Live complex.

While route details have not yet been posted on the Tour's website, information in the city's Public Way Reservation System shows a long, straight 30-mile route. From Chick Hearn, the riders will turn left onto Figueroa and then left onto Olympic. They'll travel six miles before turning onto Fairfax and making a short jog over to Venice, which they will take to an oceanside turnaround. The return route will follow the same path, but will divert from Olympic to Pico at a yet-unnamed cross-street. The finish line will be on Figueroa.

While a conflict with the more-established Giro d'Italia may hurt the race's ability to attract international talent, America's top cyclists are signed on for the event. Lance Armstrong, Levi Leipheimer, George Hincapie and Dave Zabriskie all participated in an October Twitter event announcing the stage locations.

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