This year was the 159th anniversary of the annual Boat Race and Oxford were looking for revenge after last year’s disappointing loss. This year, Oxford were the heavier team, giving them the disadvantage of having to move more weight. However, they got off to an impressive start, flying ahead of Cambridge, a lead which they managed to retain for the entirety of the race.
Oxford finished the race in a respectable time of 17 minutes 27 seconds bringing their victory total to 77, a mere 4 behind Cambridge who are currently leading with 81 victories. Oxford won earlier in the year in the reserve and also the women’s races. Oxford again had a heavier combined weight of 757.6kg whilst the Cambridge team only weighed 736.4kg. Despite this, Oxford led for the whole race and whilst their fierce rivals gave a spirited performance, it did in the end prove inadequate.
Oxford only led by two thirds of a length at the Chiswick Steps. It was here they gave an almighty push, and started to see clear water behind them. Oxford were also leading at this point last year, when the race had to be halted half-way through due to an anti-elitist protestor swimming in the middle of the river.
After victory in this year’s race, the Oxford cox Oskar Zorrilla said, “It was fun, tough but that was what we expected. We had a plan and we stuck to it ruthlessly.” His teammate Karl Hudspith described it as a “real Boat Race.” Oxford’s crew also included an Olympian, Constantine Louloudis, who won a bronze medal with Great Britain in the London 2012 Olympics.
George Nash, the Cambridge president, confirmed that this was his final appearance in the race and also commented, “They put together a really fantastic race, they put in one too many moves and we couldn’t answer it which is something that is going to probably replay in my head for the rest of my life. I’m pretty proud of the guys the way they have committed. It wasn’t pretty rowing at all but it was tough.”
Author Daniel Foster.
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