By Mayor Marsha McLean
The big race is coming back to Santa Clarita! Next Saturday, May 18, the City will host a stage of the Amgen Tour of California for the 14th time, making Santa Clarita first for hosting in the race’s history.
Each spring, the world’s best cyclists make their way to sunny California to compete in the Tour de France-style cycling competition that winds through California’s beautiful mountains and down its iconic coast. Our City is always delighted to be invited to host a stage of this world-class cycling event. This year, Santa Clarita will serve as the official start to the finish for both the men and women’s races.
The women will begin the last stage of the race at approximately 9:05 a.m., on Town Center Drive and travel through the City’s streets before making their way to Pasadena for the grand finish. By the end of the race, the women will have covered 177.8 miles, the longest women’s race route in event history!
The men’s final stage will start at approximately 10:35 a.m., and follow the same route through town before concluding their 773-mile race.
It is always an exciting time for the City when the Amgen Tour of California comes to town. Our local businesses are treated to a surge in customers, and the City’s natural beauty and wide array of trails are showcased on national television for the world to see. Santa Clarita’s scenic landscape is one reason it is an ideal location for the Amgen Tour of California. The care the City and its residents take to preserve and protect our natural environment gets to shine during the race each time the City hosts a stage, and it will surely be the case again this year.
As the cyclists race through our streets and hillsides, they will be welcomed by the lingering greenery that has emerged after the recent rainy season. I cannot think of a better way to greet these international athletes than with Santa Clarita’s trademark natural beauty.
I have a feeling that Santa Clarita’s vibrant cycling community is another reason the Amgen Tour of California frequents our valley. The City often collaborates with local bicycling groups, such as the Santa Clarita Valley Bicycle Coalition, and our resident to develop trails and programs that enhance the local biking experience. In fact, residents can currently provide feedback for how the City can improve bicycle and pedestrian facilities through the Santa Clarita Pedestrian and Bike Master Plan Survey, available at BikeSantaClarita.com. With our commitment to the local cycling community, it seems fitting that Santa Clarita has such a prosperous relationship with the Amgen Tour of California.
The City is also excited to have the Amgen Tour of California be a part of our annual Bike Week! Residents are invited to celebrate Bike Week with free events leading up to the Amgen Tour of California. On May 15, at 6:30 p.m., head over to BJ’s Restaurant and Brewhouse on Town Center Drive for an Amgen Tour of California Stage 4 viewing party. Finally, residents are encouraged to strap on their helmets and hop on their bikes for Bike to Work Day on Thursday, May 16. By the time Saturday rolls around, everyone will be cycling just like the pros! For more information on how you can participate in Bike Week, visit BikeSantaClarita.com.
Santa Clarita prides itself on being able to provide a family-friendly atmosphere and activities for our residents to enjoy. Hosting a stage of the Amgen Tour of California is a unique opportunity for the City to treat residents to an up close view of one of the most prestigious sporting competitions in America.
The City is looking forward to hosting this exciting, world-class event once again. I urge residents to get outside and witness some of the world’s elite cyclists race through our very own streets on May 18! To learn more about the Amgen Tour of California coming to Santa Clarita, visit SantaClaritaTourOfCA.com.
Mayor Marsha McLean is a member of the Santa Clarita City Council and can be reached at [email protected].