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Imagine having eight days to showcase California to friends or relatives who come visiting every year.
Oakdale will hold a volunteer training and coordination meeting today for the 2011 Amgen Tour of California, the biggest road race in the United States.
LOS ANGELES -- Floyd Landis emerged at the Tour of California time trial on Saturday and hung out in a sponsor's tent days after accusing Lance Armstrong of doping.
Lance Armstrong crashed about 4 miles into the 121.5-mile fifth stage Thursday the same day he was accused of doping by former teammate Floyd Landis. Armstrong resumed riding but soon had to quit the race because of his injuries.
The Tour of California left its star attraction behind in Visalia, then rolled into Bakersfield with a new race leader.
The move of the Amgen Tour of California from February to May caused a stir in the international cycling world, which wondered how the upstart American race would impact the 93-year-old Giro d'Italia. Francesco Chicchi flipped the question on its head Wednesday, as the veteran Italian rider made his own impact on the California race by winning the San Jose-to-Modesto Stage 4 in a frantic final sprint.
A little rain fell right before the Amgen Tour of California rolled into Modesto, but it didn't do anything to dampen business. Fans lined Modesto streets 10-people deep near the finish line Wednesday afternoon, and a steady crowd streamed into downtown throughout the day.
The traveling extravaganza known as the Amgen Tour of California brought thousands of people to downtown Modesto on Wednesday, and with it lots of thrills, intense anticipation and even some nervous moments.
At 8 a.m. Wednesday, as scores of crew members and volunteers put the finishing touches on Amgen's Tour of California set in downtown Modesto, Bruce Burns and Tim Root had some work to do, too.
Francesco Chicchi won Stage 4 of the Amgen Tour of California bicycle race today, speeding into Modesto shortly after 4 p.m. He finished just ahead of J.J. Haedo. Mark Cavendish was third, according to unofficial results on the tour website.
Downtown Modesto business owners hope a blue sky will bring lots of green to town with the Amgen Tour of California. Restaurants, hotels and other shops are gearing up for the race to swing into Modesto on Wednesday as the finish for the fourth leg of the eight-stage competition.
SANTA ROSA -- Near the finish line of the second stage of the Amgen Tour of California on Monday, there was three-time defending champion Levi Leipheimer shivering under an umbrella near his RadioShack team bus, rain dripping off the bill of his baseball cap.
The whole world got to see one family's pride in Modesto.
If you're driving your car Wednesday to watch the world's top cyclists race into Modesto, you might want to steer clear of the course.
Mark Cavendish stuck to the plan, let his HTC-Columbia teammates do the work and then let loose with a finishing sprint to win the first stage of the Amgen Tour of California on Sunday.
PATTERSON -- The children of Patterson came out in force two years ago for the first visit of the Amgen Tour of California, lining the streets of the town, noise-makers in hand, waving signs as simple as "Good Luck! Don't Crash!"
The finish of last year's San Jose-to-Modesto stage in the Amgen Tour of California could not have been better for local bike racing fans. There will be more of the same on Wednesday when some of the world's top cyclists roll into town on Wednesday afternoon.
Lance Armstrong no longer inspires fear in fellow competitors the way he did when he won seven consecutive Tour de France titles and earned millions of dollars a year.
Levi Leipheimer is used to being favored at the Tour of California.
California or Italy? Thanks to the Amgen Tour of California's move from February to May, that's the choice the world's top pro cyclists and teams faced this year for the first time.
If you ever have wanted to feel like you're riding in the Amgen Tour of California without the hassles of training to become an elite athlete, getting on a team, having to undergo drug testing or climbing pesky mountain passes, the Stanislaus County Bicycle Club has an event just for you.
ESCONDIDO -- The climb up a snowcapped mountain during the final stage certainly gave the Tour of California a European feel, as well as the spectators dressed in an array of costumes from a devil to an overweight guy wearing only a lime-green thong.
PASADENA -- Levi Leipheimer is usually cast in the role of domestique, sacrificing his individual performance to help a teammate. This time, Lance Armstrong is playing that part and Leipheimer is the star.
SOLVANG -- Lance Armstrong is just along for the ride this time. The Tour of California is all about helping teammate Levi Leipheimer defend his title.
So much for the Sycamore Slide. While there were concerns that the extremely tight corner from Coldwell Avenue onto Sycamore Avenue might be too treacherous for speeding cyclists, all seemed to negotiate it just fine.
We're asking fans who watched the Amgen Tour of California race to share their experiences. Did you see Lance Armstrong? Was the atmosphere great? Just how fast are those bike riders? Tell us about your time watching the world's greatest cyclists.
Those hoping the Amgen Tour of California would wash downtown Modesto in the color of money were treated to a gray sky instead.
At exactly 3:24 p.m., the clouds parted in downtown Modesto. Umbrellas folded, and for the first time in about an hour it was possible to see how many people had gathered on and around I Street to watch the finish of the Tour of California’s Stage 3.
Let's find the most obscure place on the planet, the darkest corner of Way-Out-There Land, and quiz the citizens: Who floats your boat? Who has made a difference? Who rises above the rest?
SANTA CRUZ -- Maybe Modesto will provide better luck for Lance Armstrong.
The committee handling Modesto's role in the Amgen Tour of California can tell you exactly how many barricades are needed to secure the route (600), how many garbage cans will line downtown streets (60) and the exact placement of the two 30-yard garbage containers.
Modesto's Marci Fikse has definitely heard of Lance Armstrong, but she didn't know until Saturday that the world's most famous cyclist would be riding his bike twice by her house today.
The world's worst spectator sport is on its way to Modesto.
SANTA ROSA -- Lance Armstrong finished among the leaders in the Tour of California's opening stage on an exasperating Sunday that included drenching rain, a flat tire and even the theft of his time-trial bike.
SANTA ROSA -- What a mess.
If you've been at the starting point of a bike race, you may have been surprised to see what the cyclists were doing ahead of time.
SACRAMENTO -- Lance Armstrong kept his head down on the stationary bike, concentrating on his iPod and his pedaling technique. Each time he glanced up, dozens of fans barricaded 10 feet away snapped pictures and murmured with delight.
SACRAMENTO -- Hundreds of cycling fans crowded the outside of the Astana trailer hoping for a sighting of Lance Armstrong as several riders rode stationary trainers under a tent. Some of the camera-carrying spectators had waited hours for their chance to see Armstrong up close.
As Modesto puts out the welcome mat Tuesday in grand fashion for the Amgen Tour of California, it hopes the world-class bike race will leave the city a generous tip in its wake.
An avid bicyclist, Curtis Reynolds is taking advantage of the Amgen Tour of California to teach his sixth-grade students about bike racing.
SACRAMENTO -- Cyclist Floyd Landis' return to top-flight racing Saturday from a bitter two-year drug suspension was less than stellar.
DISTANCE 2.4 MILES
Experienced commuters know the traffic will slow to a crawl at pretty much the same point every day, while the truly great commuters are able to adjust their departure times to avoid such bottlenecks, arriving home just in time (barring accidents) for dinner.
SACRAMENTO -- Ready to race his bike and ever eager to raise awareness about cancer research, Lance Armstrong said that he was excited to be lining up with 135 others Saturday for the start of the nine-day Amgen Tour of California.
SACRAMENTO (AP) - Floyd Landis crashed his bike today in Sacramento during a training run for the Tour of California.
Sports is about comebacks -- rallying to take a lead, storming back in the final minutes or overcoming all odds.
The grass wasn't necessarily greener in the yard of Steve Mudge's neighbor. In fact, the neighbor had a diseased walnut tree begging for removal.
The fourth Amgen Tour of California pedals into Modesto this weekend with world-class spokes trying to cover for a world-class loss.