The Oxford and Cambridge Boat Race is being held today and is a highly competitive rowing event that takes place annually between teams from Oxford and Cambridge Universities. Dating back to 1829, the race is held on the river Thames in London and is considered one of the oldest sporting events in the world.
The first race took place on June 10th 1829, with Oxford emerging as the victors. Since then, the race has been held every year, except during the two World Wars.
The course of the race is 4.2 miles long, starting at Putney Bridge and finishing just before Chiswick Bridge. The race is typically held in late March or early April, and the teams begin training months in advance.
The day of the race is a celebration and many people wear clothing in the colours of their preferred team. The race has also become a popular social event, with parties and events throughout the day. Spectators line the banks of the Thames along the route of the race and many people watch the race from boats on the river, adding to the excitement and energy of the event.
The boat race has seen plenty of controversies and drama over the years. In 2012, the race was briefly halted when a protester jumped into the river in front of the boats, causing both teams to stop rowing. In 2019 the race was won by Cambridge, when the Oxford boat was damaged after colliding with a moored umpire's boat. No foul play was proven! And last year the BBC had to apologise after an excited Cambridge Coxswain swore on live TV. He was suitably excited after the women's record-breaking Boat Race win.
Whichever team you support, why not celebrate the day with a Volga Boatman cocktail? A classic drink first published in 1948 to celebrate the Oxford and Cambridge Boat Race!