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Direction switch could be in the works
The Amgen Tour of California could reverse its traditional North-South route in 2013, as this year's start city of Santa Rosa has put in a bid to host the overall finish, while the Southern Californian city of Escondido has pitched organiser AEG with hosting the overall start.
According to the Press Democrat, Santa Rosa enjoyed an economic benefit of $6.8 million this year as it hosted the teams and fans in the days leading up to the first stage, and it is looking to host the race for the seventh time.
"We're kind of old pros at it," said local organiser Raissa de la Rosa, the city's economic development specialist.
Escondido hosted the final stage of the 2009 Amgen Tour, using the famous Palomar Mountain climb in the stage won by Frank Schleck. According to the North Coast Times, the race organization approached them, urging them to bid for the start. NBC San Diego reported last week that the city council had approved funds to submit the bid.
According to the Modesto Bee, Modesto and nearby Turlock are applying for stage starts and finishes, while Sonora hopes to host another stage start. Solvang is also reported to be considering a bid to host a mid-week stage.
The deadline for bids is Friday, August 17. The host city selection will not be announced until November.