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2006

Winner: Floyd Landis

The finish line: Landis, the first Tour of California champion, capped his fourth day in the leader's jersey cruising in the lead pack through the 123.1-kilometer Redondo Beach Circuit course while his Phonak teammates controlled the field.

In Santa Rosa, Stage 1: Levi Leipheimer started the day with the leader's jersey, earned in the Prologue stage the previous day in San Francisco. He rode the 129.1-km course from Sausalito to his hometown, Santa Rosa, in front of cheering fans and his Gerolstenier team protected his lead.

2007

Winner: Levi Leipheimer

The finish line: With a comfortable cushion, Leipheimer kept his lead over the 124.7-km Long Beach circuit course to win the Tour of California, leading from start to finish.

In Santa Rosa, Stage 1: As in the previous year, Leipheimer rode the State 1 route from Sausalito to his hometown in the leader's jersey. He kept the jersey, but it wasn't easy. A huge pileup of bikes and riders on the second of three circuits through the city put Leipheimer in a huge hole, but the college of commissaires stepped in after the race and said they'd extended the UCI's usual 3-kilometer neutral rule for timing the riders to the site of the crash, about 10 kilometers from the finish.

In Santa Rosa, Stage 2: Starting from Santa Rosa, Leipheimer maintained his lead on the 187-km ride and was greeted by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger in Sacramento.

2008

Winner: Levi Leipheimer

The finish line: Leipheimer's Astana team kept him comfortably near the front of the 93-mile stage from Santa Clarita to Pasadena and protected the lead he took in Stage 3. Most of the third Tour of California, including the final stage, was marked by hard rains.

In Santa Rosa, Stage 1:Fabian Cancellara kept the overall lead; his CSC teammate Juan Jose Haedo controlled the field sprint to the finish of the 97-mile route from Sausalito to Santa Rosa.

2009

Winner: Levi Leipheimer

The finish line: Leipheimer withstood an onslaught of attacks to protect his lead over David Zabriskie and win the Tour of California championship for the third consecutive year. After the harrowing 96.8-mile trip from Rancho Bernardo to Escondido, Leipheimer called it the "sweetest victory of the three."

In Santa Rosa, Stage 1: On a cold and rainy 107.6-mile trip from Davis to Santa Rosa, Spaniard Francesco Mancebo attacked early and raced to the finish line to take the leader's yellow jersey.

2010

Winner: Michael Rogers

The finish line: Leading by only nine seconds at the start of the stage, Rogers fended off the attacks of the riders who threatened his overall lead on the 134.4-km trip from Westlake to Agoura Hills.

In Santa Rosa, Stage 2: Australian Brett Lancaster took the overall lead by winning the 176.2-km race from Davis to Santa Rosa in cold, wet and windy conditions.

2011

Winner: Chris Horner

The finish line: The bunch sprint stage gave no challenge to the yellow jersey of RadioShack's Chris Horner, who sealed his first Amgen Tour of California overall victory 38 seconds ahead of teammate Levi Leipheimer, with Garmin-Cerv?o's Tom Danielson taking third. The sprinter-friendly final stage took the riders on a 132.4-km ride from Santa Clarita that ended in title sponsor Amgen's headquarters city, Thousand Oaks.

In Santa Rosa: The Tour of California did not include Santa Rosa on its itinerary for the 2011 event.

2012

Winner: Robert Gesink

The finish line: Peter Sagan won five of the eight stages, but he saw his chance at a Tour of California win disappear when Robert Gesink launched an attack in the final 4.5 kilometers of the stage and pulled away to win the stage and take the overall lead away from Sagan.

In Santa Rosa, Stage 1: Levi Leipheimer earned the biggest cheers, returning to competitive racing just six weeks after his left leg was broken when he was hit by a car on a training ride crash in Spain. The stage victory went to Peter Sagan.

— Compiled by James Barger, The Press Democrat

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