2017 Amgen Tour of California route announced

CG/Tim De Waele/Corbis via Getty Images

LOS ANGELES -- AEG Sports announced Tuesday the 575-mile course for the Amgen Tour of California, which is now a 2017 UCI WorldTour race. The tour begins with the four-day Amgen Breakaway from Heart Disease Women's Race in South Lake Tahoe on May 11. The men's seven-day stage race is May 14-20 and starts in Sacramento. The 12th annual edition of the men's race will visit 12 host cities, including San Jose, Santa Barbara and Pasadena.

"As the sport of cycling continues to bloom in America, the Amgen Tour of California men's and women's events are both part of the UCI WorldTour for the first time, a privilege and designation reserved for the world's premier races," said Kristin Klein, race president and executive vice president of AEG Sports. "This means the competition will reach an all-time high, with the best racers and best teams in the world lining up to take part."

Millions of fans are expected to once again line the racecourse in May to cheer on the field of cyclists, which will include Olympians, Tour de France contenders and World Champions. Fans also will have opportunities to meet and hear from cycling legends Jens Voigt and Freddie Rodriguez, who will reprise their roles as race ambassadors. Three-time Olympic gold medalist Kristin Armstrong, the most decorated woman in U.S. cycling history, will join as a first-time Amgen Tour of California Race ambassador.

"I've applauded and supported the Amgen Tour of California over the past decade and seen firsthand how much this important race has done to raise the profile of American cycling," said Armstrong, an Amgen Tour of California women's time trial champion (2011). "The Amgen Tour of California showcases the best of cycling, and inspires the next generation of cyclists here. I'm so thrilled to come aboard as part of the race in a capacity where I can help continue to spread excitement about the sport, women's cycling and this world-class race."

Local organizing committees in each of the Host Cities are recruiting fans (with and without cycling experience) to fill thousands of volunteer positions for various duties along the course. Volunteer registration is open now.