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Photos: Tour of California Begins in Northern California, Slowly Heads to L.A.

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The 800-mile Amgen Tour of California got its start yesterday, making it way from Nevada City to Sacramento. 24-year-old Mark Cavendish, who is a 10-time Tour de France stage winner and is known for his sprinting skills, took the win for the day for the HTC-Columbia team. The 104.2-mile leg took him 4 hours 4 minutes 6 seconds.

Now in its fifth year, the tour is drawing large numbers of people. Lance Armstrong, who rode in support of last year's winner Levi Leipheimer, said he "was blown away by the amount of spectators along the route" on Twitter. When the tour hits downtown L.A. on Saturday, attendance records are expected to be broken.

In addition to downtown, the tour will also go from Palmdale to Big Bear, in the Santa Monica Mountains, giving Southern California three stages.

For the Record: An earlier version of this post said a stage went from Pasadena to Big Bear. As a commenter noted below, Station Fire-related damage has that stage going from Palmdale to Big Bear.

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