Cyclist waiting to hear final decision just before start time at 1:15pm. photo: www.news10.net
Stage 1 was initially scheduled for a 10:15am start today, May 15, 2011 in South Lake Tahoe. The race was to start there, do 1.5 laps around the lake, then crest over Brockway Summit (hwy 267) before finishing in Truckee. That would have been 119 miles. Due to snow, organizers changed the start time to 1:15pm and altered to course to go from South Lake Tahoe up the West Shore then over Brockway to Truckee. That would have been 52 miles.
Around 1:15 pm, organizers canceled the stage altogether as the snow never let up. I suppose it was a good call because right now, at 4:30pm, it’s still snowing quite hard and it’s sticking to road surfaces.
Three-time Amgen Tour of California champion Levi Leipheimer told spectators:
“The riders discussed as a group and we just don’t feel comfortable riding knowing what can happen, especially in light of what happened last Monday. We still have a full week of racing ahead of us, so we want to make sure everyone is healthy. With the weather conditions the way they are, racing today is just not possible. On behalf of all the riders, we apologize and appreciate everyone’s support and understanding.”
Tomorrow’s Stage 2, that starts from Squaw Valley, is still set to start on time at 10:15am. Riders will do one neutral lap around the Village at Squaw Valley before hitting the road to Sacramento.
Watch video interviews with some of the cyclist: www.velonews.com