A pure road race within Levi's GranFondo

A group of professionals will now join the masses in tackling The Growler route at the front of America's premier gran fondo. It is now being offered as an actual race for anyone who wishes to compete. Seasoned and storied athletes will tackle a route that's as difficult as some of the most challenging single-day professional road races in the world. Competitors must approach this grueling route in top form. Men and women will chase a $55,000 cash purse which will be split equitably between the top five of each group. Anyone who races the Growler is eligible.


1st Place: $10,000
2nd Place: $7,500
3rd Place: $5,000
4th Place: $3,000
5th Place: $2,000


1st Place: $10,000
2nd Place: $7,500
3rd Place: $5,000
4th Place: $3,000
5th Place: $2,000



Breaking these rules will lead to disqualification.


We all start together regardless of age, gender, or ability. However, we do require strict staging protocol to be adhered to at the start line. All growler competitors will gather at the front, underneath the start/finish arch in a fenced area. Only athletes with a Growler number plate attached to their bike are permitted into this staging area. Large staging banners are placed at the front of each of our seven routes where participants should line up.


At Levi's GranFondo, all participants will receive an official finishing time. However, only the Growler course is treated as a race, where awards are given to the top 5 men, and top 5 women finishers. All other routes are non-competitive, and are not eligible for prizes or awards.


As a competitor in the Growler, you are not allowed to have your own, dedicated personal support personnel at any of our aid stations or anywhere else on-course. You are of course welcome, and encouraged to ask your friends or supporters to volunteer at an aid station provided that they sign up through our volunteer program, and are there to support all participants.


No equipment other than what you can carry yourself is allowed to be placed or staged on-course. For instance, you are not allowed to stash gear, clothing, or equipment on-course in any way to be collected or swapped out during your race.


No athletes are allowed to start before the main group at 8:00am. All athletes must start by passing under the start line truss at, or after 8:00am, and before 8:20am after which point it will be removed. Furthermore, no athletes are allowed to take any support or draft from a racer who has not started with the main group.


Time trial bars are not allowed. Use of them poses a danger to yourself and others in our large, and dynamic pack environment.


This should be obvious, but littering is not allowed. Aid stations placed on-course will have waste management. You will be able to discard trash at these locations only.


If you leave any personal items, packs, clothing, etc. at any of our aid stations, they are unlikely to be retrievable until days after the event, and will likely end up in our lost-and-found. Shipping charges will apply if you are unable to retrieve items in person at Bike Monkey HQ in Santa Rosa. We advise you to place your name and address on items you might discard at an aid station.


Disputes of any kind must be addressed in-person with official race scoring staff at the finish line. A dispute is not guaranteed to result in a disqualification or action on our part, but will be heard, and may be reviewed. Disputes that are unable to be substantiated with evidence will be disregarded.


General misconduct will not be tolerated at Levi's GranFondo. Deliberately interfering with the progress of other athletes, or creating an unsafe racing environment will result in disqualification.



At 4:00 PM on Friday, April 12th we will host a mandatory rider safety meeting for all Growler participants. This meeting will be in-person at the Windsor Town Green, and is required for all racing Growler competitors. If you cannot attend the meeting in-person join it virtually on Instagram.


Traffic over the first several miles of Levi's GranFondo is controlled to the best of our abilities with the support of California Highway Patrol, and Windsor Police. However the event takes place on an open road, meaning that at any time you can and will encounter vehicle traffic that is not associated with our event. For this reason, you must adhere to a strict center-line rule at all times as you may encounter vehicles trying to pass you or oncoming traffic. The majority of the course takes place in remote areas where traffic is sparse, but not absent. Share the road.


All courses are marked with corresponding colors. The Growler is marked in red. Additionally, in the last 10KM of the race, you will begin seeing course signs that indicate the distance to the finish. There are two critical roundabouts where you could veer off course if you are not attentive. The first roundabout comes at 600 meters to the finish, and you must continue straight through it. The second roundabout is just 100 meters from the finish and is obviously a crucial turn to make. These signs, and support personnel will work together to guide you into the 100 meter long finish straight.


You will be given three numbers to apply to yourself and your bike. The first is a number plate to place on the front of your bike, and should be hung from the front of the handlebars, not bent around the headtube or tampered with in any way. While it may be tempting to bend it around your headtube, this makes the numbers nearly impossible to read. There will also be a "bib" number plate that you will need to attach to the back of your jersey with provided safety pins. Finally, there is a seat-post sticker that must be attached to your bike's seat post in the manner that is indicated on the sticker itself. It includes a sensitive RFID tag that will be used to capture your finish time with electronic equipment. You must attach these items as we have described. If you need assistance, of course our staff can ensure that your numbers are properly attached. Here are examples of what these three items look like:


The finish of the Growler is considered to be technical, as you will be catching slower participants who rode shorter routes and will be finishing ahead of you at the same time. For this reason you must exercise extreme caution in the last 5KM of the race as you overtake much slower riders.

Our fleet of moto marshals will do their best to alert slower riders of your approach so that they may move to the right edge of the road, allowing you to safely pass them. But please consider that these slower riders may not have the technical riding abilities that you do as an elite cyclist.



We will provide a neutral bottle feed at each of our four full-service aid stations specifically for Growler competitors. There will be bottles with plain water, and bottles with Gu hydration mix. In order to ensure that both men and women receive this support we are providing color-coded bottles. Men's bottles are blue. Women's bottles are yellow.

Men will be allowed to grab and discard up to two bottles from the men's blue bottle cache.

Women will be allowed to grab and discard up to two bottles from the women's yellow bottle cache.


The bottle feed will consist of a mixture of bottles that contain Gu electrolyte mix, and plain water. They will be designated with signage at these bottle feed tables which will be placed beside the road with large signs indicating which bottles are for the men and which are for the women.


Along the Growler course we provide 2 self-serve water stations, and 4 full-service aid stations. Self-serve water stations consist of water containers that you must stop at and use to fill your own bottle(s). They are intended for athletes suffering well behind the leaders, and therefore we do not advise a top contender to stop here unless absolutely necessary. Our 4 full service aid stations on the other hand feature a range of support from food, hydration mix, mechanics, and the Growler Bottle Feed Zones. Aid stations are located as follows:

- 29mi: Cazadero (self-serve water)
- 45mi: King Ridge (FULL SUPPORT + BOTTLE FEED)
- 67mi: Skaggs (self-serve water)
- 89mi: Cloverdale (FULL SUPPORT + BOTTLE FEED)
- 109mi: Geysers (FULL SUPPORT + BOTTLE FEED)
- 123mi: Alexander Valley (FULL SUPPORT + BOTTLE FEED)


There is no "roving" mechanical support. Make sure to bring your basics: tube, pump, multi-tool, etc. If you need assistance from a mechanic, you must get it at one of our full-service aid stations indicated above.


We do not provide "bag drop" support on-course. In other words, we cannot manage the placement of any items for you on-course.


Levi's GranFondo will take place one week after the Sea Otter Classic, on Saturday, April 19th of 2025.

The purpose of these rules is to make our event fair and safe for all who are involved. Apart from the support and nutrition that we provide, Levi’s GranFondo is a self-supported event.

Our Roots

Levi's GranFondo is, and always has been, much more than a one-day sport. It is part of an inspired culture that dates through more than 100 years of cycling in Sonoma County. Competition on the bicycle established itself here before the 1900s, and it has since prevailed, and flourished in every way.

In the mid 1980s, the televised Coors Classic road race was top of mind, and featured some of the world's most well-known professional athletes of the time: Dale Stetina (yeah, Peter Stetina's dad!), Greg LeMond, Bernard Hinault. In 1988, the race incorporated King Ridge and Coleman Valley roads--the same roads introduced to the masses with our first edition of Levi's GranFondo.


In 2006, AEG created the Amgen Tour of California which significantly boosted the trajectory of racing in the United States, producing a clap of thunder for cycling in California. Levi Leipheimer quickly took center stage, embarking on a 3-year overall winning streak. 

In 2016, after working closely with race organizers, AEG agreed to select our original Gran route as the 7th stage of that year's tour. It was dubbed The King Stage, recognizing the caliber of roads in Sonoma County, and pronouncing that Levi's GranFondo delivered good on its promise of offering a challenge worthy of a world tour road race.

This Missing Ingredient

But one thing has been missing from our formula for too long now. As we see a shift in the attention of cyclists throughout the United States, and the reality that producing large-scale bike races is tough business, we've resolved to do our part and leverage what we already have, and know to pay it back to the sport that inspired it all.

For these reasons, and so many more, Levi's GranFondo now leads the charge to host a pure road race as an integral component to the best day on two wheels.


All participants who complete The Growler at Levi's GranFondo will earn themselves a unique, one-of-a-kind finishers award.

Recognizing the accomplishment of finishing one of the most challenging single day road courses is something we feel is very important. Beginning in 2024, everyone who completes The Growler route during Levi's GranFondo will earn themselves a one-of-a-kind award to commemorate the accomplishment.

Got what it takes?