Led by Co-Captains Sean Burkitt ’14 and Zoe Chazen ’14, Andover Cycling improved on last year’s sixth overall finish by two spots and came in fourth in the final standings.
“We had a really strong season, and I think that having a similar team for the past two years was really helpful for our development. We didn’t lose anyone from the Boys team last year and only had three girls graduate, so this team was very experienced,” said Nick Swenson ’15, next year’s Boys Captain. “What that means though is that this year we have quite a few of our good racers graduating.”
The team will graduate six Seniors this year: Burkitt, Chazen, Logan Blaine ’14, Daniel Lee ’14, Mandy Reichenbach ’14 and Ian Whittall ’14.
On the season, Boys A finished in third place out of eight teams, while Girls A took fifth place in a field of seven. Boys B captured second place, and the Boys and Girls C teams took home sixth and fourth place respectively.
Chazen accumulated the fourth most points in Girls A, and newcomer Paxton Hyde ’15 took second in Boys B.
“I think we have some good depth on this team, especially with our Boys B team this year. Yes, we’re graduating most of the team, but I’m confident that next year’s team is going to be very strong,” said Swenson.
“There is a strong group of returning riders who I know will lead the team to great wins and adventures next season. On the girls side, I was so happy with the performances of our two freshmen, Meg Davis and Leah Adelman, and our lower Helen Simpson and also so proud of next year’s captain, Liana Margolese, who started cycling this term and rocked each race. She has such an amazing attitude. Nick Swenson, next year’s boys captain, has a lot of experience on the cycling team and will do a great job leading the dynamic group of next year’s seniors,” Chazen added.
While neither the Girls or the Boys team managed a top-spot finish, Andover got consistent top-end production from Chazen, Burkitt, Swenson, Whittall and Liana Margolese ’15.
Swenson said, “I think, from what we have seen this season from our B and C teams, we’re set up really well for next year and we’ll be in contention for the top spot.”
Swenson described the season as an emotional roller-coaster, littered with bumps and bruises but not without its triumphant highs. “One of the highlights for me was just the rally wagon rides that we had as a team. We had races pretty far away, so we spent quite a bit of team bonding,” he added.
As for the low points, just weeks earlier, Swenson suffered through one of the poorer races in his time at Andover. “I finished pretty much in dead last, so that was pretty tough,” Swenson said.
After his tough outing, he bounced back in a big way in the final race of the season, finishing in ninth place, the highest he has ever finished in his Andover career.
“After everything that happened this year, I’m confident that I’ll be able to build on my successes and really improve before captaining this team next season. It’s been a great year for Andover Cycling, and there is no doubt in my mind that next year will be one to remember,” Swenson concluded.