top of page


After Last Year’s Championship, Varsity Mountain Biking Victorious at Home Race

After Last Year’s Championship, Varsity Mountain Biking Victorious at Home Race

After Last Year’s Championship, Varsity Mountain Biking Victorious at Home Race


Varsity Mountain Biking has started the season strong with three first-place finishes already in the 2023-2024 season.

Contributing Writer

October 12, 2023

Shaan Patel '27

The school’s Mountain Biking Program, led by Head Coach Michael Fitzgerald and Assistant Coaches Ted Miller and Ted Weihman, is looking to repeat last year’s success, which culiminated in a first place finish at the Housatonic Championship. 

The program was founded by Coach Fitzgerald eight years ago, seven of those years competing as a varsity team. Over the years, the team has competed very well. From the start of the Program to the current season, the team has gone from 4 or 5 riders to nearly twenty riders. 

The team is a diverse combination of experienced riders and new riders who just started racing this year. Mike Xu ’24, a Varsity rider, said, “Coach Fitzgerald often reminds us that everybody has a different goal when they race. Some might aim to win, while others might aim to finish the race.” 

Coach Fitzgerald said, “We try to incorporate many different techniques into our program” to help everyone, experienced riders and beginners, “build skills that you can use in a race but also can use it in any other kind of life”. 

Mountain biking races include different race classes for various racing levels and skills. There are four different classes so that every biker can have competition and race against those at similar skill levels. These classes each compete in different races depending on the level of the class. 

Cat 1 bikers race multiple laps on a difficult course; Cat 2 bikers race one lap on a difficult course; Cat 3 bikers race multiple laps on a normal course; and Cat 4 bikers race one lap on a normal course. The difficult course raises some challenges for its riders, as it is full of bumps, quick turns, and hills. These difficult courses require advanced skills to complete. Cat 1 riders earn the most points for their team while Cat 4 riders earn the least. For example, the last-place finisher in Cat 1 earn more points than the first-place finisher in Cat 2 and so on. 

Last year, the team won the Housatonic Mountain Bike League Championship with a dominant podium finish. The team competed against seven other schools in the northeast. The season resulted in six riders from the school on the overall season podium. 

For the boys, Sawyer Dillon ’24 was in 1st place, Ciaran Groom ’23 was in 2nd place, and Adam Wright ’24 was in 5th place. For the girls, Maya Grogean ’26 took 1st place, Sadie Panaro ’25 took 2nd place, and Sonia Rashid ’25 took 4th place. Wright, a two-year Varsity co-captain, said, “The Championship was the result of a dominant performance in each and every race.” 

In mountain bike races, the team of riders that accumulates the most points throughout the entire season wins the championship. This means every rider contributes to the team in their own way. Wright said, “All riders throughout each class put up strong performances last year, from seasoned veterans all the way to our newest riders.” This year, the team strives to defend its coveted championship title. So far, the team is on target to meet this goal. 

The team dominated the first two races of the season, winning both. Individual riders also achieved success. Cat 1 rider, Asher Frankel ’26, won both races with substantial leads. Over the course of the season, the team will race in six regular-season competitions and one championship.

Shaan Patel '27 is a contributing writer for The Record.

November 16th

Read the latest issue of The Record as it appears in print.

The Latest

Our Picks

Debate Team Dominates Home Tournament in Historic Season

What Makes a Good All-School Speaker?

Where Does Our Trash Go?

There Ain’t No Such Thing as a Free Lunch

The Early Bird is Sleep Deprived

Conservation is Fashionable at Vintage Closet

Inside the College Recruitment Process with Committed Athletes

Renovations to Memorial Dorm Forces School to Adjust Rooming Plans

Courage Garden Unveiled During Emotional Ceremony

Editor's Note: This article was recovered from The Record's online archive. There may be stylistic and visual errors that interrupt the reading experience, as well as missing photos. To read this article as it appeared in print, view our print archives.

More reads


Editorials are written by members of The Record's Executive Board. They typically center on issues related to the school or student life on campus.

bottom of page