Departure place King City is debuting in the Tour of California. Like an eager host, the town welcomes the peloton twice throughout the day. The riders depart town and race south along Highway 101 before turning out of the Salinas Valley at San Lucas. The route travels over the first two KOM climbs before re-entering King City at kilometre 80 and heading north.
A left turn leads the race into the heart of Monterey County. After Sycamore Flat the road slowly but surely climbs up East Carmel Valley Road to reach its KOM-peak after 4.1 kilometres at 5.9%. Following a long descent and a tight left turn the riders tackle the climb up Cachagua Road – 3 kilometres at 7.6%.
The Tour of California moves through Carmel Valley Village and turns right on Laureles Grade, a 5.4 kilometres climb on a wide road. The average gradient is 5.7% and the summit is crested with 8 kilometres remaining. A sharp drop and a steep ramp – 1.1 kilometres at 10.3% – before the riders
enter the Laguna Seca racetrack. The last kilometres to the line are descending, including the spectacular ‘Corkscrew’ chicane.
Two years ago, the group split on the steep climb to the track before Peter Sagan outsprinted Greg Van Avermaet and Nathan Haas.
The first three riders on the line take time bonuses of 10, 6 and 4 seconds, while two intermediate sprints (at kilometre 64 and at kilometre 107.5) come with 3, 2 and 1 seconds.
Tour of California 2018 stage 3: Route maps, height profiles, and more
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