It’s rare to see sunshine at Ocean Beach in May, but not quite as extraordinary as watching the world’s most-talented cyclists pedaling together along the shore.
The 125 men competing in the Amgen Tour of California started the third of eight stages near Fulton Street and the Great Highway at 11:15 a.m. Tuesday, luring hundreds of spectators from The City and from elsewhere.
“It’s just such a unique energy ... watching these professionals with everyone else who loves it too,” said Grant Taggart, 31, who watched the athletes cross the finish line at the first two stages in Santa Rosa and Sacramento.
Taggart, a San Francisco resident, had to take time off work for the second year in a row to soak up the race — and he was not alone.
Otis Guy, 56, pedaled from his home in Fairfax on “a beautiful day in Marin” to the beach in his spandex bike gear because “it’s just a nice opportunity to see such amazing talent so close by.”
Stage 3 was a 113.3-mile ride down the coast to the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. Stage 4 starts at 11 a.m today in San Jose.
Fans waited outside the massive luxury vans that escorted the riders from their most recent stop in Santa Rosa and asked the cyclists to sign autographs before they blitzed by the bright-yellow starting line.
About 15 minutes after the send-off, Guy, a retired firefighter who said he’s been riding for 28 years, said he’d probably be back next year as he started pedaling back toward Marin.