Biting wind and frigid temperatures could not stop Andover Nordic last Wednesday, January 20, at Proctor Academy. With a time of 13:46 in the Girls Five-Kilometer, Co-Captain Carmen Bango ’16 sped across the finish line first out of 79 racers. In the Boys Five-Kilometer, Rex Noble ’18, Andover’s fastest boys skier, clinched 21st place out of 99 racers with a time of 14:45 minutes.
Andover faced tough competition at Proctor, taking on nine competing schools in the girls race and ten in the boys. However, the team seized the opportunity to exhibit its depth, with four boys and six girls placing in the top 50 racers of their respective races.
Cole DeMeulemeester ’18, who placed 75 in the boys race with a time of 20:19, said, “In this race, we had a strong showing from all of our team. And while only Carmen, Rex and [Isaac Newell ’18] were toward the front of the girls and guys groups, we definitely competed well against the other schools.”
Girls Nordic came in fifth overall with 85 points, largely due to Bango’s first place finish in the event. She was supported by some strong performances from Claudia Leopold ’18, Co-Captain Claire Glover ’16 and Evelyn Mesler ’17 who clocked times of 18:57, 19:29 and 19:48 minutes, respectively, to take 26th, 30th and 33rd places.
Boys Nordic came in eighth overall with a score of 148 points. Following Noble’s top 25 finish, Newell, Spencer Davis ’18 and Aditya Krishnamachar ’17 finished within a minute of each other with times of 16:32, 16:53 and 17:08, respectively, to place 42nd, 47th and 48th.
The team worked hard all week to prepare for the Five-Kilometer Skate Race, which requires competitors to mimic an ice skating motion with their skies. This technique differed from that of a classic-style Nordic race, in which the racers’ skies go straight back and forth.
Krishnamachar said, “We worked on technique because [Wednesday] was a Five-Kilometer skate race, so [the race] was big on getting our style correct.”
Parker Tope ’16 said, “Since there hasn’t been a ton of snow, it’s been difficult to train. Mostly we have just been doing strength work and running and small balancing exercises.”
Andover had to adapt for this week’s competition against Cardigan on Wednesday, where it returned to classic Nordic-style skiing. The team looks to continue its strong performance as it shifts into the later half of its season.
Editor’s Note: This article is covering last week’s Nordic race, as the results were released on Friday