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Palmdale new host city of Amgen Tour of California

Palmdale is replacing Pasadena as the host city for the start of Stage 6 of the Amgen Tour of California  May 21.

Because of winter mudslide damage to a portion of Angeles Crest Highway that was part of the stage that will finish with a mountain climb to Big Bear, the route had to be altered.

The stage will begin in Palmdale, head south out of town on Sierra Road and then make a left turn onto the Angeles Forest Highway. During the 135-mile stage there will be more than 12,000 feet of elevation.  The stage will end at 7,000 feet above sea level at the Snow Summit ski area. It’s the first alpine finish in the 5-year-old race.

The field is expected to include seven-time Tour de France champion Lance Armstrong and three-time defending Tour of California champion Levi Leipheimer.  The race runs from May 16-23 and will cover 800 miles from the start in Nevada City, Calif., to the finish in Thousand Oaks.

-- Diane Pucin

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