Cambridge University Women's Boat Club produce record-breaking Boat Race win
But Light Blues' men suffer narrow defeat to Oxford in the Cancer Research UK Boat Race
Cambridge University Women’s Boat Club clinched a record-breaking victory over Oxford in the 90th Women’s Boat Race.
But there was no joy for Cambridge University Boat Club as they were beaten by their Oxford counterparts by just over a length in a gripping men’s race.
It was ladies’ day on the Tideway as the Light Blues delivered on the promise that their squad have shown throughout the season, starting in the early public outings in the autumn.
Much will be made of the awful start by Oxford in the race, when they caught a crab in the middle of the boat after only three strokes.
However, Cambridge had made a very good start themselves, so putting that positive and the negative of their rivals into the equation, it led to them surging clear.
And there was no let-up throughout the four-and-a-half-mile course as they continued to put the pressure on to make sure that they got their bow over the finish line first at Mortlake.
The victory was secured in 18min 33sec, with Oxford eventually crossing the line in 19.05, 32.66sec behind and 11 lengths adrift.
What followed in the women’s reserve race was an even more comprehensive win for Cambridge’s second crew Blondie, who beat Oxford’s Osiris by 13 lengths.
It was a far closer affair in the men’s race.
Cambridge lost the toss and Oxford chose the Surrey station, and despite the bend being in the Light Blues’ favour, the Dark Blues made a great start.
It limited the chances of Cambridge getting any sort of advantage ahead of the long Surrey bend, and a move close to Hammersmith Bridge saw Oxford take the lead, which they were to never surrender.
However, it was not for Cambridge’s tenacity or resilience as they produced move after move and battled as hard as they could to eat into Oxford’s lead.
There was never anything more than a length between the crews, and it was visible that they were making progress at times, but Oxford would then respond to edge back their leading margin.
So the Dark Blues crossed the finish line in 16.59, for a winning margin of one-and-a-quarter lengths.
And there was also victory for Oxford in the reserves’ race, with Isis beating Goldie by two-and-a-half lengths.