Snow Stops Play

Not quite the start that organisers of the 2011 Amgen Tour of California had hoped for as dramatic weather conditions forced the cancellation of Stage 1 – the 191km Lake Tahoe loop (Sunday May 15). Initially a three-hour delay to Stage 1 had been announced (along with a proposed shorted route) but as temperatures plummeted and freezing winds continued to rise there was growing concern amongst teams and riders that safety could be seriously compromised; leading, eventually, to the official cancellation.

Race officials have announced that they will continue to monitor developments overnight and will work on contingency plans for the event’s subsequent stages, including announcements on possible delays to Stage 2, due to start later today in Squaw Valley. However it is understood that at the time of writing storm conditions have already forced the closure of the Donner Pass on Highway 80, the only practical exit route out of the High Sierra Mountains. The Pass, with an elevation in excess of 2000m, gained its name from the Donner Party of East-West emigrants who, in 1844, found their way similarly snow-bound and resorted to cannibalism to survive. Cyclo wants to make it clear that, as much as we love cycling, we don’t condone any such course of action…


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