Amgen prep has committee members ready for race day

Bike Auburn chairman, volunteer coordinator present their daily schedules
By: Bridget Jones, Journal Staff Writer
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The big day is almost here and local Bike Auburn members are ready. The Amgen Tour of California will be making history in Auburn as the city hosts the Stage 3 start of the race Tuesday morning. So what is a day in the life of prepping for the Tour like? The Journal sat down with Doug Cahill, Bike Auburn’s community volunteer director, and Capt. John Ruffcorn, Bike Auburn chairman, to find out. Doug Cahill Cahill said he spends more than 20 hours a week on his Bike Auburn duties. Here is what one day might look like for him. 5 a.m. – Review any volunteer messages that have come through during the night, including instructing willing but unassigned volunteers on which part of the Stage 3 route would be best for them to assist in. 7:30 a.m. – Bike Auburn committee meeting. Provide volunteer updates to committee members. 10 a.m. – Tactical planning meeting with the Auburn Police Department. Review street closures and staffing levels in 22 sectors throughout city. Go over updates from AEG and Amgen officials. Contact sector leads with any changes. 11 a.m. – Help make sure police department volunteers are set up for race day. 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. – Summarize e-mails. Go for a six-mile run to clear head. 3 p.m. – Meet with vendor staffing Gold Country Fairground parking lot for Tuesday. 4-9 p.m. – Go over details of morning organization for race day as needed. 9 p.m. – Send out updates to other volunteer coordinators about any changes to staffing requirements. Cahill said he probably gets about 40 Amgen-related e-mails every day, and with going over the details for organization on race day, he doesn’t have many free moments. “A lot of my time now has been spent in the details of organizing that morning, so that kind of fills the gaps,” Cahill said. Cahill said there has only been one major issue in the planning process. “Here is the biggest fire: we discovered the truck delivering our (volunteer) T-shirts … got stuck in that closure on Highway 50 by Tahoe,” Cahill said. The T-shirts successfully arrived in Auburn Thursday afternoon. John Ruffcorn Ruffcorn said in continuing his duties as police captain and acting as committee chairperson his normal 10 to 12 hour days have become 12 to 16 hour days. Ruffcorn said he estimates that one day he received 100 e-mails regarding the Tour. Here is a look at his schedule. 5 a.m. – Exercise before coming into the office. Begin looking at Amgen e-mails received overnight. 7:30 a.m. – Lead Bike Auburn meeting. Hear updates from various committee members. 10 a.m. – Start answering some of the Amgen related e-mails. Get various invoices and checks to the Chamber of Commerce. Work with the Holiday Inn to get Amgen T-shirts to their staff. 11 a.m. – Work with City Manager Bob Richardson to put video together that will play on Jumbotron on race day. Answer community questions and concerns about road closures. 12 p.m. – Continue working on getting shirts to the Holiday Inn. Check more e-mails and voicemails. Grab a protein shake or quick lunch. 1-8 p.m. – Continue with daily police captain duties. Coordinate on tables and chairs for media room for race day. Complete other Amgen-related tasks as necessary including answering calls and returning e-mails. 8 p.m. – Leave for the day. Talk with his and fiancée’s foreign exchange student about Amgen planning and police captain duties. Talk with fiancée, Angel, about prepping for race day. After going to sleep, wake up occasionally with more thoughts about planning process. Ruffcorn said he doesn’t think there have been any major fires to put out during the process, but it has been hard work. “It hasn’t been easy,” he said. “It’s run relatively smoothly. There have been some frustration among committee members, and there have been some concerns in the community.” Ruffcorn said his various Amgen duties had him looking back at marketing and accounting books he used while securing a master’s degree in business. His role as Bike Auburn chairman and the entire planning process could have been a lot rougher if it weren’t for all the volunteers, committee and community members working with him, Ruffcorn said. “Thanks to those wonderful people who have been here and working on this,” he said. “My job could have been a lot harder (without them). Everyone on this committee has had some rough days, I’m sure.” Ruffcorn said it’s important for Auburn citizens to know he and Chief Valerie Harris continued their normal police duties during the process, and he hopes the community will see all the hard work that went into the Tour stage start as they enjoy Tuesday’s festivities. Reach Bridget Jones at