Honey Springs and Tour of California Stage 1 Ride Report-15 May 2016
by Rob Verfurth
Riders: James W, Larry, Rob, Cresap, Denise, Proulx, Ernst, Guido, Neil, Oleg, Bernie, John M, Len, Eric & Lisa R, Tom and Tyson
We had a large group out for the ride up Lyons Valley and Honey Springs the day before the start of the Tour of California. The race itself was starting the next day down near Mission Beach and would climb up Honey Springs. We climbed up Lyons Valley first and regrouped at the Country Store. After the fast descent of Honey Springs, we turned around to climb up, just like the pros were going to do on Sunday; not sure who won KOM as I was sweeping. We regrouped again at the Country Store before heading to Japatul and the descent of Dehesa.
I pulled Bob P down most of Dehesa and we grouped up with Cresap, Bernie, Len and Guido near the Barona Casino. The six of us pulled hard and rode fast the final 5 miles on the way back to the start. We closed the gap on the lead group and finished together. Kudos to Denise who rode super strong all day. The ride was 60 miles and about 6,400 feet of climbing, good fun.
The next morning, Guido, John M and I met at the bike path to ride to the Stage 1 start. We picked up Neil at Torrey Pines, stopped at Bird Rock Coffee Shop and then rode to ski beach. After parking the bikes in a security corral, we walked around all the team vans seeing lots of the tour pros. We met up with Rick & Denise. Rick rode with Peter Sagan and his Tinkoff team on Saturday via a special invitation. Rick had a photo with Peter Sagan from the ride and got it autographed that morning; so cool. The teams were all introduced and the start was neat to see. Guido and I rode home via Miramar and Black Mountain Roads. We eventually drove to Oleg’s to watch the live telecast. Rick & Denise, Len and John M were there too. Hodges rode over through the canyons. We watched a great race, drank some of Oleg’s beer and some went down to see the peloton speed by only a few miles from Oleg’s house. Peter Sagan won the stage. Look forward to another stage of the Tour of California coming to San Diego next year. Photos from the two days of riding are in the link.