Amgen Tour to bring riders through EDH

By: Matt Long
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The biggest bicycle race in North America is coming through El Dorado Hills. The Amgen Tour of California, an eight-stage, 810-mile race slated to run from May 16 to May 23, starts in Nevada City and eventually ends in Thousand Oaks. The Tour’s first stage is a 104-mile stretch that runs from Nevada City to Sacramento and will take the professional riders down Salmon Falls Road and through El Dorado Hills. The riders will turn left on Green Valley Road from Salmon Falls Road and then take a right on Silva Valley Parkway and stay there as the road turns into White Rock Road and heads Southwest to Jackson Road on the way to Sacramento. Wayne Lowery, general manager of the El Dorado Hills Community Services District, is thrilled to have the race come through town. “I think it’s pretty neat and I think we should have a party,” Lowery said. “I’m pretty sure we’re going to have some type of an event.” Even though the race doesn’t come through Folsom, the city’s Parks and Recreation Director, Robert Goss, who’s also an avid bike rider, is excited about the big race. “Last year I went to Santa Rosa to watch them race and I’m sure I’ll be somewhere this year,” Goss said. “If you’re a cyclist like I am, it’s a very cool event. The spectacle of the whole event is awesome. A lot of us train on the same roads that these professionals will be racing on at speeds we can only dream about.” Goss said he expects to the event to have some impact on local businesses as well. “It’s a Sunday and people will be out and about,” Goss added. “It might inspire people to go to a bike shop and get something they’ve been wanting. Other people might go out for dinner before or after the race or go to a bar and watch it on TV. “It certainly builds excitement. Folsom’s a big cycling town and I’m sure the clubs and teams will be out there wearing their colors.” Leejay Hinge, 33, works at Bicycles Plus in Folsom and also competes on the Sierra Nevada Race Team. He’s among the many that are looking forward to watching the professional riders. “I think it’s awesome and will be exciting,” Hinge said. “I’m absolutely going to watch it somewhere, probably in Sacramento. This race will be good for business at the shop and it will be good for everyone.”