George Hincapie was the star attraction at the second Breakaway Ride presented by Specialized which saw over 800 riders complete one of three routes in Northern California on Sunday April 25th.
The event, a charity fundraiser for Amgen's Breakaway from Cancer initiatives, raised over $55,000. The first Breakaway Ride on April 11th in the Los Angeles area raised over $40,000.
Over 250 cyclists rode either a 22 or 55 mile route in the Sonoma County starting and ending in Santa Rosa. Almost 600 riders took the opportunity to ride the course of Stage 2 of the upcoming Amgen Tour of California, a 113-mile test with 7500 feet of climbing from Davis to Santa Rosa. The route included two difficult ascents Oakville Grade at mile 87 and Trinity Grade at mile 90.
Oakville Grade is only one mile long, but it averages over 12% and has stretches up to 16%. Trinity is longer at three miles but is a bit less steep with grades between 8 and 10%. Both these climbs were timed and the male and female riders with the lowest elapsed time for both climbs were awarded King and Queen of the Mountain honors.
Not surprisingly, George Hincapie was the King of the Mountain for the men with Tanja Tamguney of San Francisco the winner of the Queen of the Mountain.
Hincapie, fresh from his Spring Classics campaign led the riders out of Davis on a perfect day that saw both Andrew Messick, President of AEG Sports which owns the the Amgen Tour of California and race director Jim Birrell ride the full distance between Davis and Santa Rosa. It was great to see the two men most responsible for America's premier stage race not only talking the talk, but walking the walk as well.
With almost $100,000 raised for Amgen's Breakaway from Cancer initiatives the two Breakaway Rides were not only a lot of fun for the 1600 plus participants, but of great benefit to the cancer community as well.