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Stage 8: San Francisco - Santa Rosa, 130.6km

San Francisco is the start of the final stage, with the Golden Gate Bridge closed to vehicles to accommodate the riders. The May date should ensure that sun – not rain – will greet the riders as they cross the iconic structure. Though don’t rule out the possibility of the fog, of course…

The route will likely present strong headwinds as it heads over the bridge, through Sausalito and Mill Valley before heading up the coast past Muir Beach, Stinson Beach and Point Reyes National Seashore. Moving inland a set of short hills provides the final difficulties before the flat finale. Unless the race for the overall is just a matter of seconds we probably won’t see any moves from the overall contenders, but opportunists with a bit of energy are almost certain to brave the wind and give it a go. Winning a stage in bike-crazy Santa Rosa in front of 30,000 fans is something any pro racer will remember for years to come.

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