Copperopolis 2008

Copperopolis - (c) Ken Conley
Photo by Ken Conley

Women's Finish - (c) Ken Conley Copperopolis - (c) Ken Conley

Copperopolis 2008 Photos

Scene: sitting on a hill overlooking the finish, a bike is laying still in the grass. "Popssssssssssshhhhhhhhhh..." One of its tires gives up -- it bore its rider to the finish, but Copperopolis took its toll.

I went out to Copperopolis this year, billed as the Paris-Roubaix of California. Intead of pave, there are roads that were never properly paved, cattle grates, and water bottles dislodged by the bumpy descent. The course itself features beautiful climbs up canyons, a lake, farm lands, vineyards, and rolling green hills. As a photographer, I couldn't be more thrilled that I wasn't riding, especially after I saw so many riders carrying their broken bikes.

Several winners were disqualified for crossing the yellow line at the finish, making it the most decisive part of the course. The yellow line started in the final 100m to the finish and was a bit like putting a driving test at the end of a brutally difficult day.

Pro 1 - (c) Ken Conley

Taylor Tolleson - (c) Ken ConleyThe Pro Men's race was a BMC vs. Cal Giant slugfest. BMC brought Taylor Tolleson, Mike Sayers, Jackson Stewart, Jonathan Garcia, and Scott Nydam among others. Cal Giant brought their armada of 14 riders. Tolleson and Sayers were among the four BMC riders and four Cal Giant riders in the lead break of eleven that started the final lap. I left before the actual finish, but I hear that Tolleson won.

Copperopolis 2008 Photos

related articles: California 2008 NCNCA
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Comments (1)

stevetokyo:

Great pics! Excellent clarity. The Copperopolis countryside is a fantastic setting that looks like it could help produce some classic cycling shots. Nice work.

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