Now in its 11th year, the Tour of California has come of age since its beginning in 2006 when Floyd Landis, riding for Phonak, won the inaugural race.
In 2010, the eight-day race moved from February to its current spot on the calendar in May. That ushered in a new era of success as race owners AEG positioned the event as a tune-up event for the Tour de France.
Some riders also use the Tour of California to regain their form after the Spring Classics, but for others, especially Americans, the race is a top target. US riders have won six of the first 10 titles, with Levi Leipheimer claiming three of those in 2007, 2008 and 2009. Landis was the first winner, of course, with Chris Horner winning in 2011 and Tejay van Garderen taking the overall in 2013.
The Tour of California is an annual pro stage race, part of the UCI America Tour. It first took place in 2006, and typically covers between 650 to 750 miles through California. The race takes place in May, over eight days.
Australian Michael Rogers was the first foreign winner in 2010, with Dutchman Robert Gesink taking the title in 2012, Bradley Wiggins of Great Britain winning in 2014, and Slovakian Peter Sagan riding to an improbable overall victory in 2015.
Levi Leipheimer has the most wins to his name with three consecutive victories in 2007, 2008, and 2009.
|Year||Rider Name (Country) Team|
|2015||Peter Sagan (Svk) Tinkoff-Saxo|
|2014||Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Team Sky|
|2013||Tejay van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing Team|
|2012||Robert Gesink (Ned) Rabobank|
|2011||Christopher Horner (USA) Team RadioShack|
|2010||Michael Rogers (Aus) Team HTC-Columbia|
|2009||Levi Leipheimer (USA) Astana|
|2008||Levi Leipheimer (USA) Astana|
|2007||Levi Leipheimer (USA) Discovery Channel|
|2006||Floyd Landis (USA) Phonak Hearing Systems|