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Small towns get big boost from Amgen race

The Amgen Tour of California brought big time exposure to small towns like Carpinteria.

When the racers came down the local streets and highways, TV cameras on motorcycles along with shots from a helicopter over head beamed out spectacular shots of the race to the world.

Many kids from the Carpinteria Boys and Girls Club lined the route.

“I’m really excited,” said Juan Orozco a 16-year old from Carpinteria who watched the race from his bike. “This is my first time.”

The kids let out quite a cheer when the racers whooshed by. “I think this is fantastic. These guys love exercise,” said Dave Bleecker with the club. “Being outside is all part of our program.” He said the race was inspiring to the kids.

Longtime resident Sally Green said the exposure would possible bring more tourists back to the area some day to get a close up look at the beauty they saw on TV.

For some residents however, the race meant road closures and delays until all the riders, and their support teams came through. One area where there was a traffic snarl was Coast Village Road in Montecito. That detour was through a small shopping center.

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