For the first time in the race’s history, cycling fans and enthusiasts will have the opportunity to participate in the Amgen Tour of California by riding on the actual race course just prior to the eighth and final stage of the 750-mile, Tour de France-style race.
The ‘Nissan Ride Before the Pros,’ taking place in downtown Los Angeles on Sunday May 20, 2012 from 8-9:30 a.m., will allow cyclists of all levels to ride on a 5-mile, closed-circuit course that will be part of the 2012 Amgen Tour of California’s eighth and final stage taking place that same day. Free to participants of all experience levels, the ‘Nissan Ride Before the Pros’ will begin and end at the official finish line where the professional riders competing in the 2012 Amgen Tour of California will cross to complete the 42.6-mile stage they started in Beverly Hills on Rodeo Drive earlier in the day.
Along the way, riders taking part in the event, which begins at L.A. LIVE at the foot of STAPLES Center, will head up Olive Street passing Pershing Square before a “sprint” past the historic Biltmore Hotel, up a challenging incline while heading towards Disney Hall and the Los Angeles County Music Center. The riders will ultimately reach City Hall and City Hall Park before making a loop back towards the iconic Jewelry District prior to arriving back at L.A. LIVE. Along the way, riders will also pass hundreds of iconic downtown restaurants, businesses, museums and other landmarks with thousands of residents and fans lining the streets cheering them on while waiting for the best professional riders in the world to pass by shortly thereafter for the final stage of the 2012 Amgen Tour of California.
“One of the most often made requests from our fans is for us to provide the opportunity for them to experience our race by riding the actual course like the pros,” said Kristin Bachochin, Executive Director, Amgen Tour of California and Senior Vice President, AEG Sports. “The Nissan Ride Before the Pros will allow all of our fans and the thousands of serious and weekend cyclists the chance to participate in the Amgen Tour of California by riding the same course that the best cyclists in the world will be competing on just minutes later. If you enjoy riding a bike, you won’t want to miss the Nissan Ride Before the Pros in downtown Los Angeles on Sunday, May 20.”
Immediately following the ‘Nissan Ride Before the Pros,’ Amgen’s Breakaway Mile will take place as part of Amgen’s Breakaway from Cancer®, a national initiative to increase awareness of important resources available to people affected by cancer – from prevention through survivorship. The Breakaway Mile is a special walk that ends at the Stage 8 finish line to honor the millions of cancer survivors worldwide. Participants not only have the opportunity to walk along the race course, but also are invited to view the race action from a special reserved area near the finish line. Registration is limited to the first 150 people. Riders can sign up at https://amgentourofcalifornia.com/breakawaymile.
This year, Beverly Hills and Los Angeles will host the eighth and final stage of America’s most important and popular cycling race, which begins on May 13 in Santa Rosa, Calif., and will end more than 750-miles and eight days later at L.A. LIVE as part of a live television broadcast of the international event, now in its seventh year. Along the way, the world’s best professional riders will race a challenging course over California’s most beautiful and iconic highways, coastline drives, landmarks and landscapes, which will be internationally broadcast live each day to more than 200 countries and territories. On Sunday May 20, the race will begin in Beverly Hills and travel through West Hollywood, Hollywood and Chinatown before finishing at L.A. LIVE. ‘Nissan Ride Before the Pros’ participants will experience a portion of the same intense route shortly before the professional cyclists complete the final stage.
In order to participate in the ‘Nissan Ride Before the Pros,’ interested fans must register prior to the event on the Amgen Tour of California website at https://amgentourofcalifornia.com/nissan. Participants must be over the age of 18 or receive permission from a parent or legal guardian.
“Nissan is glad to be back as a sponsor of the Amgen Tour of California for our third consecutive year and is even more excited to kick it up a notch by offering an unprecedented level of access to cyclists of all experience levels,” said Brian Carolin, senior vice president of sales and marketing at Nissan. “The endurance required to complete this eight-day road race takes performance to a whole new level. RadioShack Nissan Trek is back to defend Chris Horner’s leader jersey and our support of this event and the team not only reaffirms our commitment to wellness but also aligns with our goal of reducing environmental impact with innovative, sustainable products.”
During and following the ‘Nissan Ride Before the Pros’ event, fans can enjoy the Lifestyle Festival, the focal gathering point at the end of each stage for the Amgen Tour of California crowds. Located near the finish line at each stage finish, it is the place to be for all cycling enthusiasts. The Lifestyle Festival creates a giant, festive atmosphere for pre- and post-race entertainment. The festival will feature a health and fitness expo, cancer awareness education, cycling gear, family activities, bike safety education, food, entertainment and more! There will be plenty to see and do for fans of all ages.