Start Time: Noon PT
Estimated Finish Time: 3:17 – 3:56 p.m. PT
Satellite Feed Time: 4:50 – 5:05 p.m. PT
(Coordinates can be found at http://www.amgentourofcalifornia.com/news/media-info.html)
Stage 7 of the Amgen Tour of California will be the ultimate test of the rider’s resolve to capture the Amgen Leader Jersey. It’s been called the “Queen’s Stage” and compared to the epic stages of the European Grand Tours – a return to the mountain top finish that thrilled so many during Stage 7 of the 2011 race.
This is the training ground for many of the local racers in southern California, but only a handful have done the entire route, and none have done it after six days of racing nearly 750 miles. It is very possible that the winner of the 2012 Amgen Tour of California will be decided on the final 15 switchbacks to the finish on Mt. Baldy.
The race will begin in the thriving city of Ontario, situated just 35 miles east of Los Angeles. Just a few miles from the start, the riders will start a 13-mile climb to the Village of Baldy. After an acute left, the racers will face another mile of climbing up Glendora Ridge Road to their first of three monster KOMs. From there, they will have 12 miles of narrow and twisting roads that gradually descend to a fast and technical descent down the backside of Glendora Mountain Road. Riders and fans alike can expect spectacular vistas throughout the Angeles National Forest.
Another descent down East Fork will take the riders to Highway 39 and the town of Azusa. Heading east, they’ll race through the City of Glendora for the only Sprint of the day. At this point, the remaining number of flat miles for Stage 7 will have dwindled to less than two,
and there are still nearly 30 miles to the finish.
A left turn onto Glendora Mountain Road and it will be game on. The next KOM will be a nine-mile climb, 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 feet in just three miles…and the real climbing has not even started! At Ice House Canyon, the route will make a hard left turn where 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. With 1.2 miles to go, the road will straighten out and the finish will be seen ahead. At .25 miles to go, the route will make a hard left and the racers will face the final five switchbacks to the finish line. This will be the stage where legends are made and winners are decided.