The 158th Boat Race The Boat Race

The 158th Boat Race

Clare Balding presents live coverage of the annual rowing battle along London's River Thames between the competing eights of Oxford and Cambridge universities.

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It is one race, one day, and everything is building up to that.


We can't let last year happen again. There is nothing else like it in


sport, where you spent seven months, and at the end of it, you either


win or lose. Each year, they come. It is man


against man against water. Fishy is the tranquil, -- for she is the


tranquil and the Tempest, and upon her surface plays out the Twist And


Turn of hero and villain. For she is the river. And this is her drama.


You spend your whole career dreaming about winning races like


the Boat Race. Knowing that if you lose, you have basically just


thrown away six months of your life. And that is what it means to the


rowers who today are out there on the River Thames and will bear not


just their muscles, but their souls. This is a unique event, based on


intense rivalry, tradition and on the honour. There is no prize-money


on offer. In any ordinary sporting event, second place might be a


respectable result, but here in the Boat Race, second place means you


have lost. Victory is everything. Defeat is crashing. It started in


1829, when Cambridge challenged Oxford to a rowing race on the


river and the. In 2012, the Xchanging Boat Race remains one of


the most watched and famous sporting events in the world. We


have a gorgeous day for it. The cloud is starting to clear, the son


try to come out. There is a slight headwind, but conditions are good.


This is a magnificent London occasion, the last great amateur


event, and it is all free. No tickets are required. That is why


so many people are lining the banks of the River Thames. Where


expecting over a quarter of a million of them for the four and a


quarter miles from Putney to Mortlake. The river pubs will be


doing a booming business. The tow paths will be packed and full of


family picnics and barbecues. As for the crews, they have waited and


waited for this day, trying to keep calm, to ignore the crowds and the


hoopla and the noise of the helicopter. But inside, their


stomachs will be churning. The defending champions are Oxford. But


Cambridge are the younger and heavier crew. Oxford are the


bookies' favourite. The key to this classic event is its simplicity. It


is the same course every year. Often the same crowds as well. The


same two crews in terms of Oxford and Cambridge, but very different


people, because they change every year. At some point, life has to be


lived for them, earning money in the real world. The race starts at


2:15pm and we aim to keep you entertained and informed between


now and then. He Oz Clarke and James may embark


on a very important liquid based reconnaissance mission. I think you


get more of the race from this spot than anywhere else on the Thames.


There is no reason why we should move from here.


The scars are slow to heal, as we look back on the famous Oxford


mutiny of 1987. It was made clear that we weren't going to row in


that line-up. Matthew Pinsent reveals the hidden


secrets beneath the surface of the Thames. The river is full, and the


deepest, fastest water is completely invisible.


And which are to be emotionally draining journey to the start-line.


Knowing that if you lose, you have basically thrown away six months of


your life is a good reason not to -- be 158th Boat Race. Joining me


is Matthew Pinsent. I am the reserve umpire. If the umpire


should kilo but from food poisoning, I will be there. I will be


shadowing him and learning more about the roles. Hopefully, it will


be enjoyable and not stressful. those who might be tuning in,


saying, it is not a proper sporting event, you have won four gold


medals. Why does this matter? a proper sport event because it is


probably the last amateur event in the calendar. These guys do it for


no money, no reward other than the luxury of winning. And it is a


brutal physical test. You are unlikely to see a more exacting


test of a rower. This was you at the age of 19, baby face. That was


in 1990. My first race, which we went on to win. I remember being


incredibly nervous. It was very stressful. James Cracknell is here


as well, with whom you won two of your Olympic gold medals. James,


how do you view the event? You live locally. Aside from the Olympics,


it is the one time that rowing is on TV. And people grasp the


importance of it. It is the one day that these guys have the chance to


race. There is no heats, no semi. You have one chance to get it right.


How important is it to keep your temper but controlled and not get


too aggressive with the other side? That is the point. These guys might


have been training for the last two weeks, and suddenly they come down


and the tow path is 4, with that helicopter overhead. And Your TV


cameras are very close. It is a very different atmosphere on Boat


Race day. You want to replicate as much as you can knock on race day


as you have in your best training. If you can carry that through and


not be affected by the pressure, you will have success. Let me ask


you about the respective weights of the boat. Matthew, your crew in


1990 had the record deferential. Oxford were much heavier than


Cambridge. This year, Cambridge have the second biggest


differential, being much heavier. Why do the heavier crew have an


advantage? A good big one will always beat a good little one. It


is not like running or cycling where every bit of weight cows,


because you do hang off the oar handle. But Oxford are not small.


Their average height is my height, and they are a bit lighter than I


was. And Cambridge are a bit taller and heavier than I was. So it is


not like Amir Khan against one of the Klitschko Brothers. It is more


similar and the water is fairly friendly today. Let's look at the


course they will take, the four and a quarter miles, starting here at


Putney Bridge tidal Thames Water, past Craven Cottage, Fulham's


football ground, around the Surrey bend, which marks the two mile


point. Then under Barnes Bridge and down to the finish line, where


Cambridge set the record of 16 minutes and 19 seconds in 1998. Not


long after Hammersmith Bridge, that is where the reach the halfway


point across. It is a very popular spot to watch. There are a lot of


pubs in that area. I suspect they will be packed. That is where we


find Sonali Shah. I am behind the bar at the Black


Lion, one of five pubs along this stretch of the Bank in Hammersmith.


Landlord buzz cousins he has turned it into quite an event? Yes, we


realised there was not much happening along the river that was


a festival, so we have turned it into a festival with food courts


and we are raising money for charities, including for a baby


that is ill in hospital. These boys will be raising money for him. They


will be done a bit of face painting and things like that. You are bring


a bit of New Zealand here? Yes, a bit of Kiwi to make it a bit like


home. These boys do a lot of canoeing and stuff like that.


it in context for us, how big this days in terms of business? Is it


your busiest day of the year? Definitely. We take five to six


times the amount that we would normally take on a Saturday. It is


a very busy day. Which side will you be cheering on? I will be


cheering for Oxford, because our All Black captain was a scholar at


Oxford. Thank you very much. Time to find out which side of the river


the two boats will be rowing from, the Surrey side or the Middlesex


side. It is the all-important toss. Ladies and gentlemen, after all the


hard work and training these crews have put in, this bit comes down to


luck, a toss of the coin to decide which station they will start from,


Middlesex on the north side or Surrey on the south side, closest


to us. Joining me here on the podium, from the sponsors,


Xchanging, the global director of sales and marketing, Stephen Scott,


the executive director of the Boat Race company, David Searle, the


race umpire and the two President's for Oxford, Karl Hudspith and the


Cambridge, Dave Nelson. As history dictates, the winners from the


previous year toss the coin. The losers will call. Over to you, John.


Thanks very much, Clare. I have the 1829 1/2 sovereign. I will ask Karl


Hudspith to toss that and for Dave to call. Tales. The call is tails.


The coin has fallen down as tale's. Sir Dave has the choice. Which


station would you like? We will take Surrey. And a quick word from


you on the Cambridge crew. How is everyone? Feeling good. And calm?


Yeah, feeling good. Excellent. In terms of umpiring the race, what is


your major challenge? We will be looking at the wind. We have a


northerly wind at the moment, which is swinging a bit, so we have to


make sure the crews get off straight at the start. Then we


expect a light headwind as we are approaching Hammersmith Bridge.


it will be a tough race. We wish you both like and we hope for a


clean race. Cambridge have won the toss and chosen Surrey.


The same choice as last year, when Oxford won the toss. They also


chose the Surrey side and were in control by Hammersmith Bridge. They


went on to record a dominant Oxford here were hugely impressive.


Constantine Louloudis is now on the Olympic programme. Massive


celebrations earlier. It is one of those sporting events where it is


all about winning. You can see from the body language that you have to


continue, but it is a long way back for Cambridge.


The Boat Race. If you win, it hurts for minutes. If you lose, it hurts


for months. It is totally devastating when you get a result


like that. You have to just pull yourself together and say, what did


go well, and what can we do better? Cambridge's initial squad featured


three Blues hungry for revenge, including Mike Thorpe, who was


still haunted by the events of last March. I saw the fate of me and the


other two guys with me. We looked torn up, and I thought I needed to


come back this year. As in 2011, the Oxford coach's squad contains


just one returning blue, the club president, Karl Hudspith. Everyone


is motivated. I am the only guy who has won it before, so everyone else


is fighting for a first win. Powerful candidates are emerging


such as experienced rower Alex Davidson and American William Zeng.


It is nice to be at a university where rowing is the big thing. You


were properly and do not just do a little motion. Australian James


Ditzell turns 45 on race day. Cancer ruled him out of the 1992


Olympics. He had not rowed competitively since. I have been so


long out of the boat, I really realised what I missed. I enjoy the


feel of the water under the boat. December's Trial eights were the


first Test on the Boat Race course. Two crews from the same university


doing battle, team-mates versus team mates. Cambridge were split


into two equally strong boats to forge match-racing instinct,


something the president felt had been lacking last year. Quickly,


each crew forms its own identity and rallies to beat their own team-


mates. Incredibly difficult conditions, really choppy water.


Both Cambridge crews are showing real aggression. They have called


Cambridge seemed ready for the battle to come. The coach had three


candidates for the Oxford cox seek. One of them was Oskar Zorrilla.


cox is not responsible for the emotional well-being of the rowers.


They like to think that, but it is not the case. Oskar Zorrilla


steered his boat to a comfortable victory. We have shown our


teammates, let's show Cambridge, because at the end of the day, that


is what is is all about. A lot of people are here down at the start.


Who are you supporting today? are supporting Oxford. Why? Because


we were at university there. know the President, Karl Hudspith.


Are you supporting Oxford? Yes, I am. We will see if we can find some


Cambridge supporters. We are supporting Cambridge. And why?


live nearby. Is this the first time you have been to the Boat Race?


it is the first time we have been down. Our friend lives just over


the road. Good luck to all of you. Lots of people come with friends,


they might know somebody in one of the crews, or they might have an


affiliation, but for some people, it is just an excuse for a pub


crawl. When I say some people, I mean, specifically, Oz and James.


How the devil are you? How the devil are you, sir? Let's go and


plan our day. We are going to do the whole course. Shall we start in


this very conveniently sited pub? So, what's the plan? Well, the Boat


Race is a monumental British institution. Somebody has described


it as the most brutal, harsh, uncompromising test of any sport.


It is actually a drinking festival with some boating thrown in. Well,


I think it is a boating festival with a massive amount of drinking


thrown in. Where was it you went to university? Oxford. Interest in. I


am just deciding that I am a Cambridge supporter. Without


colours nailed to our mast, we boarded our craft. There is a


little stone over there, called the University Stone, that's where


everything starts. There's thousands of stones. No, the rest


of them are parking bollards. I dragged the conversation around to


the issue of the day. We're going to the famous River Cafe, where


Jamie Oliver used to work. No pie, no chips. No pies or chips or eggs


or ham. Wow! That has got a slight... Very acidic and very


fresh armpit, sweat sort of quality. The north of Italy has got lots of


red grapes, and the middle of Italy has got lots of more rare, red


grapes. Wow! That's fantastic. Would you like to try so with your


risotto? Is that all he gets? have got the bottle. I think that


was tremendous, very sophisticated, very modern, very contemporary. But


how about a pint in the Dove? That's my wine. Is it? This is a


tiny pub, it is ancient, all sorts of fascinating people came here


like Graham Greene, and the bloke who wrote rule Britannia, what was


The interesting thing, I think, is, the Middlesex bank is the best side


for people to watch the Boat Race, Hammersmith is the best spot, the


Dove is the best pub, and this terrace is the best part of the


Dove. You're absolutely right. I think you get more of the race from


this spot here than anywhere else on the River Thames. There's


absolutely no reason now why we should move from here. This is as


And those two were fairly hard to move from that spot, but move them


we did. Now, rowing was included in the Paralympic Games for the first


time in 2008. And here today, for the first time, a race in the


the first time, a race in the adaptive rowing category. They are


racing against an able body crew. The adaptive four with a distinct


advantage coming towards the finish, and they were the winners. Here's


Sonali. I'm joined by world Sonali. I'm joined by world


champions in the mixed coxed four. Congratulations - what does it feel


like to have won a race here on the River Thames on Boat Race day?


Absolutely epic, such a fantastic experience. To be here, deeply


involved in what is going on on this special day, it is pretty good.


It gets everybody watching a little bit of adaptive rowing. Yes, that's


one of the things we have been trying to do over the past few


years, building up the public's opinion of what adaptive rowing is


all about. I think we are the closest of the categories within


adaptive rowing to the able body rowers, in the fact that we have


minimal disabilities, our boat is not adapted in any way. Dave, I was


reading about your story, incredible, a couple of years ago


you had a tumour removed from your spinal column, you did loads of


intense rehab, came back as world champion - what would it mean for


you to qualify for the Paralympic Games this year? It would mean


everything. Taking part today in one of the oldest sporting events


in the world, it gives you a taste of what the Olympics in London will


be like. The closer it gets, the more it means to me. It will mean


the world to me after all my rehab. Good luck to both of you in your


attempt to qualify for London 2012. A could start to the day, something


for the many fans to enjoy. And we will be showing you highlights of


the Isis Goldie race later on. I am joined now by Andrew Triggs-Hodge


and Tom James. Very, very different, this, but both of you have


experienced it - Tom, first of all, what was it like for you, the Boat


Race? It was quite stressful, but I was there for four years, I


competed in four boat races, lost the first three, but finally house


my last one, as President. So I have got good memories of it. It


was fantastic. And Andrew Triggs- Hodge, you represented Cambridge,


there is nothing glamorous about this sport, you do not get somebody


else to carry your boat down to the river, you do it yourself. Andrew


Triggs-Hodge, you won, didn't you? Yes, in 2005. Memories I will take


away for a long, long time. What are they thinking and feeling right


now? You want to just be focused on your boat, getting the boat in the


water, just keep calm and relaxed, you want to enjoy the event, and


look at the people around, but at the same time, you need to be


focused on what you're going to be doing to win the race, that first


stroke. You cannot get too carried away. You could see the one with


the big beard, Steve Dudek, who would have now regards it as one of


his strengths, being so hairy! me, the buzz of the helicopter


brings back a lot of memories. It is a very emotional day. To go up


is a very emotional day. To go up to this level, it is a big step.


Andrew, was Steve Bowden your coach when you were at Oxford? Yes, he


when you were at Oxford? Yes, he was. Does he say anything this


close to the race? He is a very focused man, he will usually say


everything a couple of days before the race. Just before the race he


will just remind us of what we have done, bringing out the confidence


of the crew, reminding us why we are a good crew. So he does not


have to say very much. You can feel that he is bristling with


confidence, he just has to make sure that we're going in the right


direction, he rarely leaves it to the crew to get on with it. For the


Cambridge coach, he has got an awful lot to put right from last


year. Yes, but looking back on it, within the boat, they were happy


they had done everything they could do to win the race. Obviously they


were not anywhere near Oxford's standard last year. So he will be


feeling some pressure this year, but he is a good coach. Hopefully


they will put it right this year. The crews are lining up inside


their respective boat houses. And it is now time for them to take to


the water. Ladies and gentlemen, these are the 17 men and one woman


who will contest the Boat Race. For Oxford, their first female cox


since 2000, she is 24 years old, studying for a doctorate of medical


science at St Katharine's College, Zoe de Toledo! For Cambridge, a cox


who turned 19 only yesterday, he left Radley College last year and


is studying for a Bachelor of the arts in natural sciences at


Pembroke College, Ed Bosson! And for Oxford, at bow, his tenth year


at the University, he is now at Pembroke College studying graduate


entry medicine, Dr Alexander Woods. For Cambridge at bow, the President,


Dave Nelson, from Brisbane, Australia. At two, for Oxford, from


Virginia, a graduate of Yale, studying for computer science at


Oriel College, William Zeng. At two for the Light Blues, a man who


learned to row at Oxford, he is studying medicine at Fitzwilliam


College, Moritz Schramm. At three for Oxford, another experienced


rower, from Trinity College, and Washington DC, Kevin Baum. Next,


for Cambridge, a man who has survived being struck by lightning,


studying Anglo-Saxon, Norse and Celtic, Jack Lindeman. Next, for


Oxford, studying developmental Biology at Christchurch, Alex


Davidson! At four for Cambridge, another of their crew who first


learnt to row at university, he has played tennis and water polo for


his native New Zealand, Alex Ross. Now, for the President of Oxford,


at number 5, their only returning boo, the only one who knows what


victory feels like, he comes from Twickenham, from St Peter's College,


Oxford, Karl Hudspith! His opposite number has not cut his hair since


this day last year, he is the vice- president for Cambridge, reading


history, he hails from Chester, Mike Thorp. At four for Oxford, a


German international who's planning this to be his final race, after 15


years of rowing. He has a doctorate in law and is now studying for an


MSc in geography, Hanno Wienhausen. At number 6 for Cambridge, the


tallest and heaviest man in either crew, originally from Wisconsin,


At seven for Oxford, stepping up from the lightweight crew, he is 25


and from Taunton and studying in computational biology, Dan Harvey!


His opposite number for Cambridge is an Australian who has competed


internationally at under 23 and junior level. He is studying law at


St Edmund's College, Alexander Scharp!


For Oxford, the first Dutchman ever to stroke a blue boat under 29 the


oldest man in the race this year, he is from Rotterdam. Roel Haen!


And at stroke for Cambridge, a graduate from the University of


Washington who is now reading history. Niles Garratt!


They train for six hours a day, six days a week, for six months to take


part in this. Ladies and gentlemen, the two crews for the 2012 Boat


I am here out on the water with Wayne Pommen, one of our


commentators. What do you remember about those nervous moments as you


push away from the Putney sure? is just such a relief to get out on


the water. You may remember from your rowing career that those


minutes beforehand seemed like hours. You can't wait to get out


there. You know what you are doing on the water. The Boat Race is the


worst, because thousands of people are there. Cameras are in your face.


Even international rowing is not like that. So these guys can't wait


to get in their bubble. They have about 40 minutes now before the


race. How do they split that time up? They will have warm-up routines,


getting physically and mentally ready. Let's have a word about the


conditions. What do you think about the weather and the river today?


is pretty benign. There is a 10 mile an hour when from the north-


west, but I do not see it being a factor.


So it sounds as if conditions should not be a factor for either


side. James Cracknell is with us here. Who is going to win this?


think Oxford's history over the last few years will be in their


favour. The bow and stroke of the Cambridge side are both being on


the same side means the Bowes have to travel further. That is not good.


They are using a tandem wigging system, as Oxford did last year.


Yes, I do not think you really need that. The person nearer the blow


karts keep in time. Matt Pinsent's first boat, he rowed in a tandem,


and it was all tied to the person in front, so he stayed in time. A


normal rigged boat is better. Now, obviously with every outside


sporting event, it does depend on the weather whether it is to make


the greens softer in the Masters at Augusta or in the Grand National at


Aintree. But here, if the weather turns nasty, that course turns into


a real beast. It seems that we are moving into


some dramatic, Wagnerian... word! An enormous car but under.


years ago, there was an almighty storm and there had also been


behind the scenes in the Oxford camp. Andrew Cotter tells the story


of the 1987 mutiny. The Boat Race - tradition, honour,


sportsmanship. The Americans staged a mutiny. Mutiny is in the eye of


the beholder. In two became warfare. 1987, a race so dramatic that they


even made a film of it. This isn't your Boat Race, it is all of ours.


25 years on, have the scars healed? After ten years of domination,


Oxford's humiliating seven-length defeat in 1986 led to coach Dan


Topolski bringing world-class American athletes. Everybody was


genuinely excited to come over here and take part in one of the great


sporting events in the world. the world class training facilities


that the visitors were used to were absent from the amateur realm of


the Boat Race. The team didn't have its own boat house or its own boats.


Half the training were spent in a van, driving around the British


countryside. There was an incident at Radley School, where the whole


squad, the president included, refused to go out for a second


outing. Let's go out. Dan, we have done enough.


That was the moment of mutiny, if you like, where they just piled


into the training van and drove off. I thought, this is just not fun. I


am not getting paid for this. Where is the goodwill? That was wrong of


us to do. Simple as that. But what led up to that was an infuriating


couple of months of logistical chaos. It makes no sense, all this


pedalling around in that a ban from one boat house to another. It is


not getting us anywhere. We thought we were being honest in raising our


hands and walking to the front of the class and saying, teacher, we


have an issue with the way you are conducting the class. Particularly


at Oxford, deeply steeped in tradition. Tensions were


intensified by the decision about who would be in the boat on the big


day. In particular, the inclusion of club president Donald Macdonald.


I choose based on performance, and Donald Macdonald's performances


were consistently top. He named this wacky line-up. The majority of


the blue boat rowers did not seek the sense or even the rationale in


Dan's selection. There is disagreement over how the crew is


run and the fairness of it. Were you obligated to Donald as the


president of the Boat Club? In no way. It was made clear to Donald


that we would not roll in that line-up. The Americans staged a


mutiny. They have excluded themselves from the squad.


became popularised in the press. And in Dan's book, it was said to


be an American issue. That could not have been further from the case.


There is a lot of stuff in that book that is wrong. It is


embellished and ultimately very hurtful where it did not need to be.


In the book, everything was my recollection. Four Americans


withdrew. In came reserve rowers. And like a Hollywood movie, the


underdogs claimed an unlikely victory. They won, and it was


fantastic, against the odds. And I thought, what was all for? It was a


shame we could not all figure out how to focus on the things that we


held in common. It was the most extraordinary story


and a real clash of temperaments. It made for a very exciting race,


film and book. Katherine Grainger, Britain's most successful female


rower, has joined me. How important is that relationship between coach


and rower, and how much do they have to respect your intellect and


experience as well as sometimes telling you things you don't want


to hear? The relationship is crucial. There needs to be mutual


respect in the partnership. Like you said, you will have to hear


things that you will not always want to hear. But they will be the


person who will tell you that you need to be better. But it is a two-


way thing. If there is respect on both sides, you bring out the best


in each other. Andrew, the difficulty with the Boat Race is,


you are talking about a multinational crew. It is not new


rowing for one country. Absolutely. We had Canadians and Americans and


a huge range of experience from an Olympic silver medallist down to


people who came last. So the scale of bringing a crew like that


together rests on the coach. You need mutual respect and


understanding as much as a training programme. That is the sign of a


seasoned coach. 16 weeks today, the two of them will be lining up for


Great Britain for the Olympics. That is when the rowing will start.


How great is the depth of British rowing? How has the legacy of


Pinsent and Redgrave been followed 2011. The British team of top the


world championship medal table. 10 in total, three of them gold. This


is the best British rowing squad in Olympic history. The most medal


chances, the best rowers. Competition for places is fierce.


The four is the men's main boat again. But for the last two years,


the best rowers have been in a pair and lost. There is tension in the


team because there is a bit of uncertainty. We have to have ups


and downs with pressure through the season as we go. I can't be sure I


will be rowing for Great Britain yet. We are coming close towards


the selection. It is a really strong team. I am new to it, and


the standard is really high. In the women, Katherine Grainger has three


Olympic silvers. For her, the battle is less about selection,


more about going one better. athletics Dorrie is the three


silver medals. I am still missing the fairy-tale ending, the gold at


last in front of the crowd. I am aware that if you could write the


story, that is how you would write it. Lots of questions, some still


to be answered. But with the spring come final trials, when everything


becomes a bit clearer. The season is about to start. The four is


still undecided. Reid and Hodge are in, along with Alex Gregory. Alex


Partridge and Tom James will battle for the last place. New and old


faces across the whole squad. With just over 100 faces -- days to go,


the pressure is now on. In the past, you had just one leading boat. This


time, it is very tight. The team as a whole is rising to the occasion.


We put the pressure on ourselves because we are so good. It is about


performing on the water in that one-off opportunity. We want to


deliver. A good illustration of the dead the


British rowing right now. Now we welcome viewers of BBC World News


and BBC America. You join us here on the banks of the river Thames.


We will be watching the 2012 Xchanging Boat Race on fold shortly.


The crews are out on the water and going through their warm-up routine.


I enjoyed by Katherine Grainger, Britain's most successful female


role, with six world titles and three Olympic silver medals. You


were talking about how obviously, the perfect end to the story is a


gold in London. What do you feel about competing at a home games?


Genuinely looking forward to it. A lot of people talk about the


expectation and pressure. It can become paralysing, the thought of


the scale of it. But it is just a fantastic opportunity that so many


athletes I know who have retired would give anything to come back


and do. You have teamed up with Anna Watkins. You have so far been


unbeatable. So far. It is one of those partnerships that is so


special. It comes around once every now and again. It just works. It


has been successful, and we look forward to the next four months.


How much has the set-up change in the 15 years you have been involved


in British rowing? Has it become more professional? Without a doubt.


It has transformed. When I came in, there was not the level of lottery


funding that there is now. People on the team were in massive amounts


of debt. They could not afford petrol to go to training. There


were not many abroad training camps, the facilities, the level of


coaching and support staff. Everything was at a much lower


level. Across the board, the whole thing has stepped up every year.


And we are seeing better results. suspect it is no coincidence that


we are seeing more women want to take up rowing because of what you


have done. The most exciting development in the recent history


of the Boat Race is that from 2015, the women's Boat Race will also


take place here on the Tideway. For now, it remains in Henley. This


Conditions were perfect for this year's race. Both crews started


well, with Cambridge, who had not won for five years, taking an early


lead. They looked to be claiming a dominant victory, but there was


drama to come. The number two seat was thrown backwards, and the boat


almost ground to a halt. Cambridge were fighting to stay ahead. It was


tight. But eventually, the Light Blues heard the news that they had


won, just. The traditional celebration followed, before


thoughts turned to the Tideway, in three years' time. It is a big plus


for the women, bringing it in line with other sports, where or the


women are on an equal footing. have come on so much in the last


few years, we are as good as the men, and we're going to show it.


How different a challenge will it be, moving from Henley, to having


the race here? It will be a completely different event. The


Boat Race at Henley has been a wonderful experience, it is very


much a protected atmosphere. It is a much smaller deal, in terms of


numbers. And much shorter. Yes, it is a third of the distance, even


less than that. So, the training regime, the tactics in the race,


everything will be very different when the women come here. Is that


why it is taking a while, they want to get the women to a certain level


to be convinced that they can do it? It is not that they need to


step up, they will easily manage the racing here, that's not the


problem. It is just almost about tradition, it has been the Henley


Boat Race. I think it is very good that the women's Boat Race and the


men's Boat Race will now take place over the same distance, with the


same crowd, and the same excitement. Is it something you would like to


get a piece of yourself, either taking part or coaching? I don't


know if I could do any more degrees! I spoke to someone from


Oxford who has been studying for 10 years! Yes, but the oldest one is


29, and I am a little bit past that now. Of course, it is part of our


competitive nature. When these events happen in your own sport,


you want to have a piece of it. What will be great is that it will


involve more women in the sport of rowing than ever before. We have


got to let you go to Radio 5 Live now, so, many thanks to Katherine


Grainger. There is one woman taking part today, that's the Oxford cox,


Zoe de Toledo. It is a very tricky course to negotiate, because


beneath the waterline all sorts of problems, as Matthew Pinsent can


explain. The most important seat, especially for the Boat Race, is


the coxing seat. They have a couple of weapons at their disposal. First,


the rudder wires, and secondly, as you will see on Boat Race day, they


have all got these microphones, so that everybody in the boat can hear


exactly what they are as saying. But for all the technical wizardry,


the most important decision they have is the line on the river,


which, for them, is all about that view out there. What does it every


eight-year-old learned at school? That the shortest distance between


two points is a straight line. So, here we are, at the start, and


there's Hammersmith Bridge. So, why don't the coxes take the shortest


line between these two points? I will show you why not. Every Coxon


knows that the straightest line is seldom the quickest here on the


Boat Race course. The fastest water is the deepest, and it is only as


the tide drops that you get a proper indication of where that


deep, fast water is. Here we are on the inside of the first bend, at


Fulham, and look how far these famous flats sweep out into the


river. In the Boat Race, the crews will be coming past way over my


head. The fastest water is the deepest. The quintessential


challenge for the coxes is not just to find the quickest water on the


first bend, at Fulham, but to keep their crew sitting in it for the


full race. As the huge Surrey bend unwinds, the cox will be making


sure that their growers on the inside line, and holding their


position. If the race is still close at Barnes Railway Bridge,


close at Barnes Railway Bridge, then it is going to be a classic.


The last bend on the course is the sharpest, and the Middlesex crew is


going to feel that it is definitely going to win from here. There is


not anything in the last five minutes of the race which favours


the Surrey station. All of that looks good in theory. But here's


the challenge for real. The river is full, and the deepest, fastest


water is completely invisible. The river is probably 150 metres wide,


and the coxes have got to pick the fastest line with no visual


references. They know that within 20 seconds after steering off the


tide, that could cost them the race. What a nightmare job. And if you


get it right, your reward is to be chucked in the river. It does not


seem to be fair. Still to come, Oz and James continue their vintage


odyssey up the River Thames. You're taking me to visit a brewery which


makes foreign lager on our beloved Tideway?! We will join them again


later, and you can see how many people are piling in, trying to get


a decent view among the banks of the river. This big sign, who is


this for? It is for Alex Davidson, our old school friend, we have


known him for the last 12 years. Absolutely ages, yes. Tell us some


secrets about him. He is a very loud chap, he is very strong, he


has been doing rowing for ages. is probably the most focused and


ambitious person that we know. he will need to be. I hope he saw


your banner earlier. Also, we have the girlfriend of Moritz Schramm


the girlfriend of Moritz Schramm with us here, and you do this


yourself, don't you? A Yes, it is a very different feeling, when you're


doing it yourself. When you're rowing, once you take the first


stroke, you can feel the boat, you can feel your crew, you can feel


the race, but on the other hand, for me, it will just be more and


more nervousness. He texted me this morning, saying, baby, don't worry,


we have got this. He knew that I would be the nervous one. Where we


you position yourself? I'm going to a friend's house who lives on


Putney Bridge. We have been watching it there for years. Thank


you so much for coming down to speak to us. For all of the rowers,


all of that training, it is not just about winning the race today,


it is about actually making it into the boat in the first place. Early


mornings on the river are not the romantic ideal. It is hard work and


it is hugely time-consuming. Knowing that if you lose, you have


basically thrown away six months of your life is a really good reason


not to lose! Time is ticking by, and Steve Trapmore needs to pick


his final eight. Last year we had some really good guys, but the


internal competition was not as good at it is this year. The coach


also has to contend with the vagaries of fate. Just days before


the final announcement, a virtual certainty, Jack Lindeman, has


aggravated a tendon injury. amount of mileage we do, it is


natural for our bodies to break down a bit. One man's injury is


sometimes another man's opportunity. That is the nature of a brutal


selection policy. It can be really cut throat and difficult at times.


There are setbacks obviously for everyone involved. Oxford returned


from their French training camp with the selection process drawing


to a conclusion. If everybody is fit and healthy, I could put the


boat out tomorrow. But there's definitely one or two seats with


some guys in the Isis boat who could perhaps make a bit of a


challenge. One of those, staking a late claim, was Geordie Macleod.


Alex Davidson had impressed greatly, but at a price. Sean Bowden


demanded total commitment. He has broken down my stroke from start to


finish, since we arrived. I had to spend a lot of time thinking about


exactly what he wanted. Hopefully I am getting there. Elsewhere, one of


the stars of the trials, Oskar Zorrilla, had found himself out of


favour. I will want to know that whoever is coxing Isis will be able


to challenge me, because that is when I will be able to get my


practice. One thing the Boat Race has shown over the years is that


anything can happen between now and the day. 5th March 2012, and, in


the shadow of the Olympic Stadium, the two crews were finally unveiled.


For the Dark Blues, Alex Davidson had proved his worth to claim the


sixth seat. And William Zeng, despite his injury, made it. It is


the opportunity for real achievement, as opposed to watching


the other guys do it. There would be no fairy-tale for James Ditzell.


And Katherine Apfelbaum would have to be content with the Cox seat in


the Isis boat. I decided the best bet was to come in, thinking, I am


coxing the boat, what do I do to make it as fast as possible? That


has been my mindset since the middle of September. Zoe de


Toledo's opposite number of would- be Ed Bosson, who turned 19 just


yesterday. Jack Lindeman had proved his fitness in the face of


competition, and Mike Thorp was back for another assault. We know


what we need to do, we cannot let last year happen again. So, for all


of them, the hard work is about to begin, they cannot drink any


alcohol for days before the race, they need to eat plenty of


carbohydrates, but for everybody here watching, it is just a big day


out. When last we saw Oz and James, they were on the raised balcony


outside the Dove, near Hammersmith Bridge, where they would have


stayed, given the choice. But the good thing about being slightly


tipsy is, you can become more easy to persuade to carry on your


adventure. Do you fancy, because I know you believe everything was


better in the past, to go to a pub for a traditional bar game? I will


put you out of your misery, the game is skittles. Isn't that a


little bit old-fashioned? It is, compared with Space invaders.


they play with cheese? No, they play with a ball, I think. You need


a bit more spin, James. Here we go. You throw it down and it went


bouncing, like Barnes Wallis. It is quite interesting, actually, there


is a long tradition of beer making on the river, for obvious reasons,


I suppose, stuff could come in by boat. There is actually a brewery


which makes lager. Foreign lager. Foreign lager? You're taking me to


visit a brewery on our beloved Tideway which makes foreign lager?


I thought it would give you a chance to have a good rant about


the decline of England. I will give You are amused by the most childish


dreams. It is quite funny. Seriously, look at it closely, you


will see what I mean. It should be slightly fruity, a little bit?


think there is a textural quality of the skin of a baked mackerel.


slightly mineral feel to it. Is it bottled here or tank here? It goes


off to going cans, I asked that earlier. Please pay attention. You


thought because I was asking the question, it was irrelevant. But


actually, it was pertinent. Now, So is that the finishing post?


is it. Well, they queue for enhancing my appreciation of the


Boat Race, but where would you watch it? This is the end, and you


can watch the rest on TV. Putney is the beginning and you can watch the


rest on TV, or you can watch an enormous chunk of it at the Dove.


Well, it is safe to say that they had fun with that. James May well


be joining me next week at Aintree for his man and a programme, which


makes me think about perfect physique for a rower. Andrew


Triggs-Hodge and Tom James are with me again. What is the perfect shape


for a road? It seems that you can be small and delicate, or you can


be a beast of a man. There are lots of different routes. If you have


long limbs, it helps, and big lungs. Genetics are certainly part of it.


But being athletic and dynamic, the sport is about applying the power


you have got and timing. You see all shapes and sizes. But generally,


longer leavers and bigger lungs helps. And you have to stay


motivated. You have been training this morning? Were were up bright


and early this morning. It is a seven day job. But it is the same


for the guys in the Boat Race. They are training every day for the Boat


Race. But the motivation spills out into their dedication. And the


coaches were combat. As everybody at homes finishes their lunch, how


much do rowers eat in a given day, and what do they eat? For someone


like me, it is about 6000 calories. You try and get more in when


training, because I find my weight drops a bit. It is not the same for


everyone, but it becomes a bit like a chore. You have to see it as


another training session, which is the opposite of what a lot of


people find. 6000 calories is typical. Enjoy watching the race. A


brief word about weight - Cambridge are 7.9 kilograms per man on


average heavier than Oxford. In the past, the heavier crew has seemed


to have the advantage. Oxford are the favourites today, though. We


have near-perfect conditions. I hand you over to our commentary


team. Let's look at total wins of For the last two years, the


favourites have been beaten in this race. I will hop in a boat and head


to the finish. Our commentary team will now take over, Dan Topolski


Cambridge are a stone heavier. But Oxford are odds-on favourites to


win. This sporting fixture has been here well before the Moscow


Olympics. But over the last 20 years, it has been equal between


heavier and lighter crews. The big boys do not necessarily win. As Tom


James was saying, more significant is that priceless ability to make


the boat go faster on a course weather conditions are constantly


changing. Down, there is plenty of driftwood, some of the worst


conditions we have ever seen? through the week, the dredgers was


supposed to be cleaning the river and getting rid of some of the


rubbish that tipped into the river earlier in the week. Oxford had


their fines knocked off by a submerged drifting log on Monday.


We have seen that all this week, and it will be a serious problem


for the coxes. It is below the surface of the water. The umpire


has stated that if there are any problems, he will pick it up. This


is the reserve crew we are watching. The crew for Oxford have come well


clear. They have won again. The Cambridge crew won the toss. And


And yet again, Isis have won. was a big margin of victory. A


great success to come off the Middlesex side, round the


Hammersmith bend. A very good performance, and it bodes well for


Oxford in the main race coming up now. There is a big weight


difference, and that is really considerable. The heavier crews


have longer legs, longer answer. That power, if Cambridge can


harness it well and really put on in the middle of the race with that


power and role efficiently, they will be a very big challenge. But


Oxford are very racy. They have three lightweights in the boat, my


size, 77 kilos or about 12 stone. That is a big difference. The coach


has been working on that. It is very much his programme after the


disappointment in 2010 to ensure that his chosen crew do themselves


justice and turn potential into high performance. I am the


president of the CBC, and this is my crew. I am studying medicine


with a PhD in behavioural neuroscience. I am studying Anglo-


Saxon, Norse and Celtic literature. Jack provides a lot of positivity


and enthusiasm. I am reading history at Homerton College. I


bring fight. I am studying law at St Edmund's. He provides a lot of


hunger and technical leadership. am studying land economy. He is a


real workhorse. I am studying economic Research. He is a fellow


Aussie, bringing a lot of experience. I am studying history.


He sets up a solid rhythm, and the rest follow his lead. I am studying


natural sciences. He is the will be fielding as his Oxford crew,


the dark Blues, are chasing their ninth victory as Oxford coach since


he was given the job in 1998. He is an unflappable man. And there is a


quiet intensity to his Crow. There is no hiding their ambition to rule


the Tideway once more. I am Karl Hudspith, President of the Oxford


University Boat Club. This is my crew. I am reading graduate entry


medicine. He won last year's Isis race. Quantum computation. Yale


graduate William Zeng is as quick with mental arithmetic as he is


with an oar. I am reading water science policy management. Another


vocal American. I am reading for an MSc in research and geography


environment. He is one of the toughest in the crew. I am studying


chromosome and developmental Biology. He has a constantly chirpy


and upbeat personality. I am studying computational biology at


Mansfield College. The third of our former lightweights in the boat, he


also rowed in last year's Isis race. I am doing a masters in Surgical


Sciences. The second of our senior internationals in the crew, a true


Dutch master. I am reading for an MSc in Criminology and Criminal


Justice. A former under 23 world champion who learned to cox on the


Tideway. Her experience is valuable. When you see the Cambridge crew, in


the middle of the boat, there is a tandem rig, one in front of the


other, with their blades on the first side. They became the first


crew to win with such a set-up. bring your weight into the middle


of the boat. That is one reason for doing it. If your boat is not going


straight in the normal set-up, you want to change that so that your


bow man does not have the same leverage. You are trying to get a


straight to running boat. That must be one of the problems they were


having. Two boats waiting. John Garrett is in the umpire's launch.


Let's see where Clare Balding has got too, towards Hammersmith? You


are going well? When you get to come down the river


on a boat, I am excited because you get a real sense of all of the


crowds. You can imagine the noise that will be here as the crews


reached Hammersmith Bridge. They still have the large part of the


race to go and the big left-handed curve. The water is slightly choppy,


with a bit of a headwind, but we have to speed up. Bye-bye.


Clare is churning up the water for the race! So she is happy. We are


now by Putney Bridge. You can see the two boats on their stations.


Oxford are on the North Bank, the Middlesex bank. And Cambridge are


on the southern bank, the Surrey station. Dan will take you through.


Please acknowledge that you can hear this. Testing for volume. Zoe,


can you hear that? At the start, we come off Putney Bridge. The forced


corner they come to is Fulham Football Club. Then they go to


Middlesex, then up to Hammersmith Bridge, seven minutes gone. Then


round the big spend on the Surrey side. Straighter long Chiswick Eyot,


round and then the last seven minutes, you are coming up through


the Bandstand, with four minutes to go. Three minutes from Barnes


Bridge. A big curve in favour of Oxford for the last few minutes of


the race, through to the finish at Chiswick.


That is the cause which is laid out ahead, a course already conquered


by the Oxford reserve crew, Isis. They started from the same station


the blue boat will start on. advantage of being on the Middlesex


here is that they will not hit the headwind until they get round the


corner. The Surrey side will hit it first. They will get the rougher


water along the first mile through to Hammersmith Bridge. Oxford will


be trying to get as much as they can in this first part of the race.


We are waiting. The umpire is controlled. The crews are waiting.


This means so much to both crews. It is one race, one day, and


everything builds up to that. The effect of losing, we can't let last


year happen again. You spent seven months, and at the end you either


Apology for the loss of subtitles for 44 seconds


have just had one British rower in their boat. You can see the two


coxes. Ed Bosson, 19 just yesterday. For Oxford, Zoe de Toledo, a winner


last year for Isis. There's Matthew Pinsent, who will be Assistant


umpire. And there's John Garrett, never a winner as a Cambridge


oarsmen. Three times an umpire of the Boat Race, and returns in


charge of the reserve race. Arms aloft, so, neither crew ready just


way. At the start is crucial. As expected, Oxford are away.


Cambridge, with the greater weight. But look at Oxford, charging clear.


Cambridge very slow on those first few strokes, we saw that in


practice earlier in the week, they were very slow getting going.


Oxford have got about a third of a length already. They are


approaching the first corner. If they can just push this on, and not


allow Cambridge to get into their stride... Cambridge know that


Oxford are good starters. They are prepared for that, they say. They


are hoping that they will be able to make their weight tell. They are


more than a stone a man heavier, and that is their big calling-card.


They have to get into position to make sure they can make the most of


this Surrey bank. Fulham football ground coming up on the right-hand


side, the Middlesex station. Both crews are at 35 strokes a minute at


the moment, they have settled into their race pace. They are just


passing Noel our commentating box. Oxford have half a length. You can


hear the umpire, John Garrett, warning the boats. He is saying to


Oxford, you're pushing further towards the Surrey station. Again,


they're being warned. Zoe de Toledo, a very impressive Cox in all the


previous matches on the Tideway in the build-up to this race.


Cambridge have done a very good job here, they have checked Oxford's


progress, and they are getting into their rhythm, moving up into


contention. Oxford still trying to get away. They need to get as much


of an advantage in this first part of the race as they can, before


they hit the big Hammersmith bend. That is worth three quarters of a


length to the inside crew, which is Cambridge. As they come into the


rest of the race, into this head wind, the Cambridge extra weight


will really come to their advantage. John Garrett has been to see both


crews, insisting that he wants at least four or five metres between


the two boats. They're quite close together at the moment. The umpire


has said he wants that gap, but they are getting quite close. He


wants them to move apart. He thinks they're both encroaching against


each other, so no-one is at fault, but he wants them further apart.


Both crews, move apart! They're coming on to the straight, and


Oxford have got about a quarter of a length. Cambridge have settled


into a very good, strong, 35 strokes a minute. Expect Cambridge,


as they approached the Harrod's Repository, to make a big, big push.


That's what they have been practising, that's where they think


they can really score. Middlesex bend, were something like


a quarter of a length to the crew on that side. But then, it really


starts to tell, as the river starts to bend around. Underneath


Hammersmith Bridge, down towards Chiswick Steps, and that advantage


could be as much as three-quarters of a length to a length. So,


Cambridge are still in touch, as they come up to the former Harrod's


Repository, now, luxury flats. Cambridge have come back, as we can


see. Oxford on the outside of his corner, this is where they really


have to push. They will try to make a big push, they have got to push


before they get to the Harrod's Repository. Cambridge have settled


into a very strong rhythm, looking very good. Remember, a stone a man


extra, it is like having an extra man in the boat. Eight kilos,


nearly 10 stone, of extra power in that Cambridge boat, and into this


head wind, it is having a big effect. Oxford, entirely aware of


Cambridge's weight advantage, conscious that their technical


skill, the ability to move the boat efficiently and effectively as a


unit, not necessarily being clunky, that could be their advantage.


Still about a quarter of a length of clear, as Cambridge start to dig


in. With the sunglasses and the pony tail, at number five, Mike


Thorp, hurting so deeply following that defeat last year, having won


the year before that. Here they go again, Oxford getting quite close.


They have straightened up again, but they are making a very big push,


to try to get as much of an advantage as possible, as you can


see the Harrod's Repository on the left. They are trying to get away a


bit, so they have an advantage going into this big, big corner.


The coxes are driving this aggressive, racing line, looking


for the fastest water, the deepest water is the fastest stream, which


is what both crews are searching for. But only if one crew moves


actually -- moves at least one length clear, can they then move


across. Something like 2000 metres, which is the usual length for the


World Championships or the Olympics. As they come up to Hammersmith


Bridge, they have got an advantage of three-quarters of a length,


going around his corner. Oxford will have to hold on now, they have


not got enough of an advantage to move ahead. You can see now,


Cambridge beginning to move, they have moved up to 37 strokes a


minute, and they are pushing fast. At stroke, a very cool man, calm


man, Niles Garratt, but women can be relied upon for great rhythm.


And for Oxford, in the bow seat, to the left, towards Chiswick Reach.


This is where the Surrey bend could count for Cambridge. Then now,


they're starting to make it count. Oxford have been warned, they have


had to move out towards the outside of that corner. It is very


dangerous for them, they have got to dig in and hold all the way


around the outside of his corner. Remember, Cambridge, big weight,


big power in their boat, harnessing it well. They have got to make this


work, they have got to move away, it is worth three quarters of a


length, and try and get clear of Oxford. Because Oxford will have


the advantage over the last bend. So, how do you think it is looking?


We have got a fantastic race on her hands, better than anybody expected,


better than the book is expected. Cambridge have done an amazing job


in the first eight or nine minutes, they have made their weight tell.


They have got another three or four minutes on this big Surrey bend,


they have to get away from Oxford, because after this, the next bend


will be in Oxford's favour. Cambridge have to get away. This is


some contest. So many sages on the towpaths were saying that Oxford


would run away with this. But here we are, coming up to the 9th minute,


by Chiswick Reach, just on the left, back upstream, and we are pretty


much level. Oxford holding on very well around the outside of his


corner. Oxford are still in this race. Cambridge's advantage is


beginning to run out, but they are making the most of it, really


having a big push now, because they know that the advantage is going to


turn to the other side of the River once they get around his corner.


They have got a straight coming up alongside Chiswick Eyot. Cambridge


Ian ward, they're trying to push out, but Oxford holding on, and now,


they will try to push on and feel that they have got the advantage.


Now, they're beginning to move, Oxford, back alongside again. And


this straight is where the advantage will start to favour


Oxford. Now, it is down to real guts and determination. This is


down to where or the real Boat Race work is done. They have got about


seven minutes to go. Cambridge will be warned, they are coming across.


But the coxes are reacting well. It is big man's work for the last


eight minutes of his race. Oxford have just got the edge. Trust is a


word you hear so much for rowing crews, trust in the Cox, trusting


each other, as a unit, to dig deep and do everything you can to take


your boat to the finishing line first. And Oxford have dug deep,


held their own around that crucial Surrey bend, and now, look as if


they are pulling clear possibly. As they come up towards Dukes Meadow


on the Middlesex side. Still something like eight minutes to go,


and nothing to choose between them. Seven minutes to go now. Once they


get around this corner. What has happened? Cambridge have stopped.


They have stopped growing, there is a man swimming a cross between the


boats. All the boats have stopped. What a shock. This is unprecedented.


Well, this could well be a restart for John Garrett. He will start the


race, with the crews pretty well even. Oxford just had the edge. He


will have to start the race again from this point. This is going to


be an advantage for Cambridge, because the weight will get them


going much faster, they will be much quicker on a winning start.


They will start where they are on the water, as they work, in the


sense that Oxford were just possibly a quarter length ahead. It


will take some time for this to be arranged. Have you ever seen


anything like this before? Never seen anything like it. The race was


stopped once seven or eight years ago. But a swimmer in the river?


It was a demonstration, clearly, to draw attention to himself. We will


find out why he did it later on. We're going to spin round, we are


going to start the race from the bottom of Chiswick Eyot, it is a


restart. That's what we're going to do. So, the umpire, John Garrett,


saying that they're going to turn around and go back to Chiswick Eyot.


This is a shock. Remember, they have worked, emotionally and


physically, extremely hard. The advantage is going to become a


really, apart from the little band which will favour Cambridge,


they're starting at the bottom of the island, they will go for one


minute along the island, they will hit that corner, which will favour


Cambridge, and then the advantage will turn to Oxford for the last


part of the race. So, the advantage is going to be a little bit with


Oxford. Whether the umpire starts the crews level, or whether he


starts them as they were at that point in the race, we do not know.


But the important thing here is, the lactate which has built up in


the muscles of these two crews, it will be extremely important. And


there you can see the swimmer in the water, that was very quick-


thinking, from the Oxford cox, Zoe de Toledo, because that could have


been quite frightening. You can see his head bobbing in the water, that


could have been quite horrific. could have had his head cut off by


the blades. But then launches that were falling cannot stop, he would


have been subsumed by them. remember in the Formula 1 at


Hockenheim a few years ago, something similar, but I was not


expecting that. The amount of lactate which has built up in the


muscles of these athletes, very, very difficult. There has got to be


a lot of very, very focused thinking in the boats as they think


about what they're going to do. It is going to be a rolling start. The


umpire is going to have to judge the distance between them, as they


start off. He will have to judge how he starts them. But look at the


waves which have been kicked up by the following launches. All of


those following launches are having to turn around, to get back behind


the crews, so the water is appalling. Whether the umpire will


give this water time to settle down, we do not know. What are conditions


launches have come to a screeching halt. We are sitting next to the


police boat which has picked up this protester who was swimming


across. He has a big smile on his face. He has achieved his aims, but


the whole race today has been disrupted. There had been all sorts


of preparations and pre-race planning and visualisation. Surely


this could not have been part of anyone's visualisation. No. But how


to take off again from a stop, that will have been thought about. But


it is how quickly they can recover. See how what cities. The boats are


bouncing around. The launches are churning it out -- about as they go


back to the start. This is very difficult for the crews. Their


adrenalin will be right up now. This is going to be an


extraordinary last seven minutes. They are starting eight minutes


from the finish. They have stopped just past halfway. But the umpire


is taking them back to start at the halfway point. You can see how the


boats are still making their way back towards the Hammersmith Bridge.


I wonder if we can talk to Matthew Pinsent, who is on the umpire's the


launch. Matthew, how is this going to work? John Garratt obviously


stopped at the race for the swimmer in the water. The rules allow him


to stop the race and restart it from any position he sees fit. At


the moment, we are taking Cambridge and Oxford back up the river,


because the tide is constantly taking us towards the finish line.


We will align them again so that they are level, and rowed the last


bit of the course. It is not ideal. But given those circumstances, what


could we do? It is a safety issue. If you have someone in the water,


it could be a very serious injury if someone was hit by a rowing boat.


Fortunately, we spotted him and stopped the race. How easy will it


be to get these crews level and how easy is it to get some sort of


level surface, too? It will be so churned up because of the boats.


Absolutely. We are bobbing about now. It is not ideal. But we could


not possibly have carried on. The rules do not allow the umpire to


designate a winner if you stop at that point. They have to cross the


finishing line. So now we are left with this position that we will


have a four or five-minute race now from here to the finish line.


wonder how long it will take for you to get in position and for the


crews themselves to be ready? Cambridge are ahead of us. Oxford


are level with us. So we probably have another three or four minutes


before the crews are back towards the position where John Garrett


wants to turn them on to the tide. This has never happened before in


the Boat Race. We have never had a swimmer before. As anything ever


happened like this team in all your experience, Olympics, training,


whatever? We have had plenty of swimmers, but always after the


finish line, swimming out to say well done or commiserations. This


is a new one. Dan, I was out watching Cambridge in their last


race on the Tideway against Molesey. And in their second race, they


almost had a collision with a cruiser which was coming down the


river and only noticed the two crews racing flat out at the last


minute and veered straight across to avoid them, but completely


disrupted the race. Cambridge, at one stage, in their boat, which is


a slightly more delicate boat than the one used by Oxford, there were


concerns that it would snap, because there was an enormous wash,


and it was going up and down alarmingly and the race was ruined.


Well, the race has been ruined here. The key thing to think about now is


how this disruption is affecting the two crews. You have three very


small people in this Oxford boat. The amount of work they will have


done to be in the race around the outside of the corner, they will be


feeling that. They have less resilience than bigger people. The


advantage of the extra weight that Cambridge have, that will help them


to dispel the tiredness in the Lakes. They will be able to move


off more quickly on a running start. They will not be held back. Their


first few shroud will be much stronger and sharper. But Oxford


have the advantage of the last corner, and that will help. But now


they are trying to get their legs moving and get themselves back.


Having built themselves up to go towards the finish, they now have


to come back up again. They are not doing much work, they are just


paddling back. They need to keep moving. But they have done races in


other fixtures where they have had to race two seven minute pieces or


two nine-minute pieces, so they have done this in training. But in


the actual main race, they will have expended everything to get to


that point. Wayne Pommen, have you ever experienced anything like this,


and if so how did you manage to reset your mind to race again?


have not seen anything like this. The last time this happened in a


Boat Race was 2001, when there was a collision and a restart. The


biggest question will be whether the umpire will start the crews


level, or whether he will estimate who was leading at the time of the


incident. In 2001, Oxford were leading when it was stopped. But


they were have restarted roughly level, and the umpire was severely


criticised. So the question is, what will happen this time? Having


talked to John Garratt earlier in the week, I understood that in the


event of any driftwood getting in the way, as we discussed earlier,


when Oxford lost their fear and and there but had to come back, if they


were to have repaired it, he would have restarted the race in the


order and the ranking that the boats were at the time of the


incident. So which of the crew was in the lead, he would set it up as


near as possible to that advantage to the crew who were leading. So by


my reckoning, it was very close. There was about a quarter of a


length in it. Imagine how much work they have to do now to come back up.


Also, you talked about the lactic acid and how they get themselves


ready again. And what about the start? It was crucial when we saw


it originally, with Oxford starting so powerfully. Looking at the


course here, the stoppage of the race happened just on this corner


here. They had seven minutes to go from the point where they had to


stop. There are now working back down the river towards this end of


the island. They will line up at the bottom end, which is pretty


well exactly halfway over the Boat Race course. They will have raced


eight minutes, and they now have nine-and-a-half minutes to go.


There is a short corner in favour of Cambridge on the Surrey side.


And as they come round to the crossing, the advantage then starts


for the Middlesex side, which is Oxford. It takes us under Barnes


Bridge. Both crews go through the centre arch and then round towards


the finish, just before Chiswick Bridge. The crews still have some


work to do. It was optimistic of Matthew Pinsent to say there were


five minutes to go. Extraordinary. Canada geese serenely in front of


us, near Putney! And mayhem further downstream. I suppose it is also


fair to say that the spectators will be waiting at Mortlake,


thinking, what has happened? Has there been a sinking? Have they


suddenly disappeared?! I am sure the word will have got out on


portable radios and mobile phones. They are probably aware of what


happened. And those watching it in cider on TV and in the pubs will


see what is going on. You can see people checking their mobile phones.


The power of Twitter. I am sure they will be filing furiously. But


there is still some time before this race will resume. Still


waiting to confirm exactly how far... I wonder who was in front.


John Garrett has been the centre of controversy before, when he was


umpire in the Isis race in 1990, when he disqualified Isis when the


two crews came too close together. That was quite a controversy.


are going to restart at the bottom of the eight. So this is the replay


of where they were. You can just see the man in the water. Who was


ahead? It looks to be Oxford, a quarter of a length ahead. If they


start a quarter of a length ahead, that will eliminate the advantage


that Cambridge will have on the first corner. It seems that that


launch has an extra passenger, heading down towards Putney Bridge,


namely the man who was in the water. You hope there is no one planning


to do something similar, because this was brewing up to be a really


close, tight-knit contest, much against all predictions. So many


were saying Oxford looked so good in the water, Cambridge unable to


nip their power properly as a flowing unit, which is so important


on this stretch of water. It is not like 2000 metres in a straight line,


as at the World Championships and on the Olympic rowing course in 16


weeks' time. This is a river all of its own, with its own special,


capricious conditions, which have caught out many a crew in the past


and will do so in the future. But the problem now is entirely man-


made and has thankfully been removed. You can see how bouncy


that water is. Very uncomfortable for them. They are just sitting,


waiting for the... The umpire will be wanting to try and let the water


settle down. In all your experience, have you ever had anything like


this? Either as an oarsman or a coach? My Bowman collapsed in 1980,


when I was with Oxford. Six years ago, the Cambridge four man


collapsed. But no disruption like this? No. Not actually in the race.


A clash and a stoppage by the umpire and then maybe start. So we


have had a restart. Matthew Pinsent, I gather you can hear us again.


What is your schedule now? We are just talking to Oxford now. John


Garrett is telling them the exact start line for the restart, which


will be down Chiswick Eyot. You obviously want to get going again


as quickly as you can, but the balance is the water. The flotilla


that follows the race churns up the river to a great extent, so they


will have to race in some bumpy conditions which are completely


unlike what they just had. We are going to restart the race. Please


get off the course. That is the lifeboat, being asked to leave the


premises because of the Wash. This is the problem. You can see, he is


churning it up again. That means the water bounces between the banks


and creates a rolling, difficult piece of water to roll on. It was


some feat for Cambridge last month in that race against Molesey to


gather themselves. At one stage, the cox it said, just stop running,


because they were pitching and it was a very close thing. Let's see


last year. Yes, and you can give us a flavour of this and what it must


be like for the coxes. It is something completely unexpected. It


is something which gets bandied about in a joking way, what if


somebody jumped into the river? You talk about debris and things like


that, but actually somebody being in the river, that has never


happened before. Already, the coxes have shown great maturity in


stopping, getting their crews back together, spinning, and getting


ready for the restart. It now becomes a completely different race.


Yes, it was developing into one of the most exciting races we have


seen for a while. They were both still right there. But they will be


getting back into the zone, they will be refocusing themselves, and


I'm sure we will see a great end to this race. Let's hope so, we would


have been well into the to get into some kind of station.


And you may have heard how John Garrett was still unhappy with


boat's there are all part of the Boat Race flotilla. Now, waiting


for John Garrett to be happy, for the crews to be ready, and on their


respective stations. Currently, both crews are on the Surrey bank,


and we know that Oxford have got to be on the other side, to satisfy


this man here. We're still not really yet quite sure whether they


going to start level, or whether they're going to start with Oxford


slightly ahead, as they were when they came round the corner. When


they got to the point of the swimmer, at the top of Chiswick


Eyot, it was pretty close. Let's go to Sonali. You have a man with you


who knows all about rowing. Yes, with me now, Andrew Triggs-Hodge.


We have been watching events unfold from Putney. What will be going


through the mind of the rowers? This is a complete game-changer.


These guys have been preparing for a race which will last 18 minutes,


and the physiological demand is very precise. They have now had to


stop the race because of a stupid swimmer, and not only do they then


have to come down from that race, put it to bed, get their heads


screwed back on, but now, they have got to start the process of getting


their bodies could back up to start racing again. The demands of


physical as well as mental. As soon as they finished that first piece,


their body would have been going, OK, fine, I can start to slow down,


start to recover. However, they have now got to be kick-started


again, to get it going again, for the last seven minutes. That is a


short race in these terms, and it is going to be a whole new demand


for them. It changes everything they have been preparing for.


their plans completely thrown out of the window. Exactly, they


prepare for one start. Now they have got to restart. They were side


by side for the majority of the race, it has been a fantastic race.


Oxford would have been confident, going into the next phase of the


race, on the inside of the bend, mentally, they would have been in a


very strong position. Cambridge had been trying really hard around the


inside of their bend, that was the part where they had to win the race.


And now, we have a situation where everybody is back to the start, but


they have moved it back, so they have given Cambridge their bent


back, which I find a bit crazy. If you have a streaker coming on in


tennis, you do not then go back a few sets. So, they have given


Cambridge another chance at their inside bend. It merely changes


everything. It is hard to know what is going to happen. The athletes


have to get their head switched back on. They have to find a new


side of their training, because they will not have practised this,


they have just got to believe that they can push on hard and get back


into the race. Who do you think will have the psychological


advantage, with the race having been moved back? Well, it would


have been Oxford, but now, Cambridge can think that they have


got a second chance, which can do some good things to a crew, they


can get their heads up again and they can really kick on. They know


how Oxford started at the beginning of the race, I think they can make


amends and really do some damage. But Oxford really had a good,


strong rhythm, they need to get straight back into that, commit to


what they were doing, what looked like a good, strong position, and


then, it is anyone's race. It is bad. They lined up to go and then


Cambridge decided to turn around and paddle back down again. It


could be that the Cambridge cox decided that the water was too


bouncy, too unpleasant, and he wanted a bit more time, and he took


that decision on his own, because there was no instruction coming


from the umpire. Otherwise both crews would have turned at the same


time. I think Cambridge made that decision to turn ahead of anybody


else. That will be another four minutes, I would say, before we are


ready, Cambridge going back up. And I have to say, it is not warm.


There is also the concern about the tide. The tide is coming in, it is


beginning to slow down now. Those launches have got to be careful,


they are just sitting there now. Usually they have a clear approach


to the start. But now they have got those floating launches. They have


got to come back through those floating launches, to get back to


the point where the umpire wants to start the race, at the bottom of


Chiswick Eyot. This is the finish, where they are waiting, some people


may be keeping in touch with friends who are at the start. Some


people have gone, it is all too much, or maybe they are looking for


another bottle. But for the crews, what did you make of what Andrew


Triggs-Hodge was saying, in terms of, the advantage was with Oxford,


but now, Cambridge have got another chance? Yes, they have got that


little bit of a corner, at the top of Chiswick Eyot, so they can take


some heart from that. But on the other hand, they know that the Big


bend is going to be against them, further down the course. Watching


the crews, Cambridge did get into a good rhythm. They were rather


ragged, the tandem that they have on that bow side, they were showing


a bit of ragged blade work, but overall, they had quite a good,


solid rhythm, which is what helped them to recover when Oxford had


that fast start. Oxford had leapt out to about half a length from the


start, but Cambridge held them, came round the first corner, and


then got back into the game, all the weigh, in the head wind, which


is to their advantage, because they have got a big crew, which is a


very big advantage, going into a headwind. Oxford, round the outside,


good steering from Zoe de Toledo, and Oxford held all the way around


the corner, and they were in a good position to steam on, they were


really in that winning position. As Andrew Triggs-Hodge has said, this


is a game-changer. I'm sure if Mike Thorp and Dave Nelson have anything


to do with the words being said in the Light Blues boat, they will


just say, 2011. This has been their goal, and they have been focused on


nothing else. I think you're going to see that Oxford's fast start,


from a standing start, at the beginning, will not be repeated


quite so easily, because the boats are floating now. They are moving,


it is a moving start, and the first stroke will not be so effective for


Oxford. So, I think it will be closer at the start, but they are


pretty close. But the water is bouncy, and my hunch is that the


boat which Cambridge have chosen to use, this boat, I think it is quite


vulnerable in difficult water. That's why Cambridge turned around,


because they would prefer to have flatter water. Can you make sure


you leave enough room between the blades, please, before the start?


The coach, Steve Trapmore, was a winner with the Men's Eight in


movement on the water. Ready - Oxford, Cambridge... The crews


themselves do not want to be starting at a disadvantage.


your hand down when you're straight. Cambridge are happier at the moment,


on the Surrey bank. So, we had a restart in 2001. I'm going to start


you... Easy, both crews. Easy! Go! Away we go, the Boat Race has been


restarted! Once again, Oxford have already taken about a quarter of a


length. They moved out very fast. They're very determined here. You


have got about three-quarters of a minute until they get to this small


bend in Cambridge's favour. Cambridge know that they have got


to make an impression. Oxford did really well there. Their blade work


is very good, they're very good in rough water, Oxford. But they now


see this as a sprint, because they know that in a few minutes, they


will have the advantage of this big corner in their favour. They have


taken out almost half a length, and they will have the corner...


there has been a big clash! And there is a broken oar. This is


terrible. She is waving, Zoe de Toledo, they have lost an oar.


Absolute chaos. This is a big decision. The umpire had this


before in the Isis-Goldie race, and disqualified one crew. The umpire


is allowing this! The umpire will have to make a decision, he must be


assuming that it was Oxford's feud, and he is allowing Cambridge to win


his boat race. Cambridge are going to win this Boat Race. There cannot


row with only seven oars. What did you see, Wayne Pommen? What I saw


was that the umpire was warning Oxford. John Garrett was warning


Oxford, he did not like where they were on the river, and he is


judging that that clash was Oxford's fault. He is letting


Cambridge go on, he is saying, Oxford, it was your fault that this


happened. Cambridge are going to win. One of the powerhouses for


Oxford, Hanno Wienhausen, with no blade at the end of his oar, he is


literally a passenger, going through the motions, because they


need to maintain that the them. But this as a contest is now over. --


that rhythm. Oxford are bravely trying to carry on, but there is


nothing they can do. Cambridge will now win by probably eight or 10


lengths. There is nothing they can do. And for Cambridge, they are now


so far clear, they can move across from the Surrey station to the


Middlesex station, to the north bank, they can take that line, and


they are going to be leading past Dukes Meadow. This was where the


clash happened. The umpire was warning. The blade broke and that


was game over. Cambridge, the odds were against them, coming up to the


point where that swimmer took over, that swimmer has had a huge effect


on this race, because Oxford were moving into a leading position. But


now, it is race over. Oxford bravely trying to do something, but


there is nothing they can do. umpire was warning Oxford. That is


how the umpire will see it. This was a boat race full of incident.


Oxford will be hugely disappointed that they have not been able to


race to their full extent, to carry out their plan. And Cambridge,


really, fortunate that all of this has happened, and they can row as


they like, all the way home. They are just doing exactly what they


aware of what has happened. They will now know that the 158 number


arete -- the 158th race is theirs for the taking. This is now an


exhibition. There is nothing Oxford can do with seven blades. There was


a disruption by a swimmer, and then the commission. The only thing


Oxford should be, if I was in that boat, I would be staying -- saying


stop rowing. There is nothing you can do. The result would be race


not finished, and that would show that something had happened. Race


not completed would mean there was clearly an incident. But at the


moment, Oxford are trying to finish the race, and they will finish many


lengths behind. So we have had an intruder disrupting the race just


as it was boiling up to be one of the closest contests, certainly


much more than last year's. In 2003, there was just a foot between the


two crews, and that is what it may have shaped up to be. On that day,


Oxford, who won, where a stone lighter than Cambridge. It was the


same today. The ingredients were in place for a classic contest until


the finish. Then we had the restart, then the Clash, and now the contest


is academic. Nonetheless, it has been the same for both crews. They


have all gone through those six months of early mornings, long


hours in the gym, long hours on the water in all weather, sometimes the


Mercury down as low as minus 40 not one particular weekend. Now a


Cambridge are pushing on. This is very sad to see from Oxford's point


of view. Sad to see them battling on with only seven men. It is very


different to football. If you are down to ten men, you can still win.


But here, you have no chance unless it happened within half a minute of


the race and they were leading, then there might have been a chance


of getting across the line. But here, no chance. The umpire will


say he warned them not once, but twice. They continued to steer


their course, Zoe De Toledo, and that is the price for what he made


term aggressive steering, attacking Cambridge to closely, too fiercely.


That is why, as Cambridge University approach the finishing


line at the end of this 158th Boat Race, it is victory for Cambridge


and victory for their coach in his second year in charge. Controversy


will dog this raised about the intruder, about the restart, about


the Commission and the broker oar. But the Cambridge, it is all about


celebration. Droxford, the winners last year so decisively, -- for


Oxford, it is all about what might have been. The against all the odds,


Cambridge come home winners, but what incident. What an


extraordinary series of events which left Oxford unable to finish


their race. It will be good to look back and see how that steering was


and where those warnings came. It happened within half a minute of


the retake. Oxford were well up and moving up to three-quarters of a


length lead. Five times, the race has been held on April 7th before


today, and each time Cambridge have won. This is a 6 victory for


Cambridge. True, controversial circumstances, but the record books


will say this has been Cambridge's day. There was so much washed that


I could not move as fast as I said. She said, there was no way we


could have a race like this. I was steering as I saw fit. I can't hear


what John Garrett is saying. were been -- we were within the


Garratt, the white flag. Oxford have complained, but the umpire


ruled that it is a clear decision. His decision. Bury controversial,


but he has given the race to Cambridge. Oxford were coming over,


they were warned, and the clash resulted in their sixth man, person,


breaking his blade, allowing Cambridge to take the race -- Hanno


Wienhausen broke his blade. Two big moments in this race. The result


stands. You have won the Boat Race. This was the first key moment, a


man in the water. That's when I was almost in real danger there. Could


have lost his life -- that swimmer was in real trouble. Then this was


the second incident. He then there was the oar of Hanno Wienhausen.


The blade comes off, and that was the contest over. Zoe De Toledo,


the cox, argued that she was within her rights, within the first 100


metres of the start. But the umpire was having none of it. Keep going,


boys. From the winners' point of view, it doesn't matter. Whatever


happens, they rowed like tigers in the race. For them, whatever


happened, they were worthy winners in their book. The man standing in


that launch in the grey top with the white hat is the gold medallist


at Sydney and now winner of his first Boat Race as chief coach of


Cambridge University Boat Club. Alex Woods is still collapsed in


the back of the boat. They are very worried about him. They are trying


to call to get the safety launched over to get him to a doctor. He


needs oxygen. They are finally getting him out of the boat.


was William Zeng to his rescue. They were trying to help him. But I


think they're only just noticed, because he has been lying flat for


quite some time. He was at the back. This was a man who was training to


be a doctor as well. He is a doctor. But he has been lying collapsed in


the back of the boat there for some four or five minutes since they


finished the race. That is serious. They have to get oxygen to him and


get him to hospital. This has been a race of such incidents. You can


see the launch is churning around. Cambridge will be unaware of all of


this. They are victors, and they are coming into the bank. They will


get ready for the presentation. Oxford were in a position twice


where those incidents happened where they were winning. They came


up to the island in a position to win. They were moving away when the


swimmer hit the water. The advantage was all for them. The


race was stopped when it was their advantage. They went back to the


start, took off and had half a length before they came together


and clashed. And again, broken oars, and the race went against them.


From my point of view, Oxford were the faster crew over the whole


course. But we shall never know. There start was not good enough,


but they had the power. By the time they crossed the line, we had seen


the end of but Oxford challenge because of that broken blade. The


first man across the line, Dave Nelson, stroke in 2011, bow in 2012


and President as well. And the president at the University. Moritz


Schramm, back in the boat, having been 2010 winner. He took a year


out last year to concentrate on his studies. Jack Lindeman, Alex Ross.


Kiwi, as he is known. And here is the man at the centre of the storm.


John Garrett. Umpire, a former Cambridge University Boat Club


president, losing oarsmen from 1983, 1984 and 1985. Went on to represent


Britain in the Commonwealth Games, Olympics and the world


championships. What an extraordinary day. Goldie were


beaten by Isis in the reserve crew half an hour earlier. Their race


went by without incident, we understand. Cambridge are about to


take their boat out of the water. Well, not too many visible signs of


celebration from Cambridge, because they are shocked at what happened


in that race. This is Dave Nelson, the Cambridge president.


Congratulations. You have won. Thanks. It is a huge relief. But it


is shocking to see Alex Woods in such a state. He is getting


treatment as wispy. What an extraordinary race, with the man in


the water and the broken blade for Oxford.


Yeah. There was a lot of to-ing and fro-ing up until the island. And


then suddenly, there was this yelling about an obstruction going


on. Next thing you know, I see a guy's head in the middle of the two


boats. And there must be 10 or 20 boats following us. So that guy was


in serious strife. And then with all the hoo-ha around the restart


and then the clash, pretty dramatic race. At what point, if at all,


could you start to enjoy it and celebrate? By the Barnes Bridge,


the gap was pretty clear. So it suddenly felt like we could relax


into are with them a touch. But we are so exhausted. We were just


trying to hang on. We will keep you updated on Alex and the rest of the


Oxford crew. The Oxford president, Karl Hudspith, is virtually


speechless, but congratulating Dave Nelson. John Garratt, the umpire,


can I have a word? What on earth was going on out there? Totally


unexpected. I am grateful to Matthew for having spotted the swim


there. He said, there is something in the water. We thought it was


some debris, and then we realised it was a swim there. We were not


sure what would happen, whether he would get out of the way in time.


Then it was clear that he was waiting for the post to come across


him, so I had to stop the race and we start. In terms of the restart


and the clash of oars and the damage to the Oxford blade, which


was completely snapped off, how clear were you that the race would


continue and that you would not call it void altogether? The rules


state clearly that crews have to abide by their accidents. If


something happens in the latter stages of the race and there is a


breakage, they have to abide by their accident unless one of the


crew's is of station and has caused that accident. In my judgment,


Cambridge were not of their station. In the immediate run-up to the


Clash, I was warning Oxford. In my view, Oxford were off their station.


The collision took place and Oxford came off worse. But Cambridge were


in the white position. So I allowed the race to continue. Zoe De Toledo


has just walked past, inconsolable. A desperate moment for her, because


there was nothing she could do. But she had to abide by your ruling,


which is that the result will stand and Cambridge have won. I suspect


that was not what you anticipated. You have played a major part.


will be the suffragettes all over again. The rowers will now make


You have not cut your hair since this day last year, when you lost


the Boat Race. Yes, pretty happy right now. Extraordinary race,


great result for you. Yes, we have been going through it all week,


saying what we would do in various situations, but I am still not sure


exactly what happened. We really fired ourselves up to go again


after the restart. And then something else happened, I still do


not know what happened, we will have to see the replay. All we


could do in that situation was to do what we have been trying to do,


which was not to look around, and just keep going. I'm proud of the


guys, that we did that. With us now, the youngest person on either crew,


Ed Bosson, who kept his cool in incredibly difficult circumstances.


I will let you guys make your way up to the presentation podium.


Enjoy it. Oxford will have to go through the presentation as well.


But what a race, Jonathan! Just a bit. A very muted atmosphere,


understandably, I am sure there would have been celebration from


Dave Nelson, but having seen the condition of Alexander Woods, and


also how upset the rest of that crew is, understandably, because


there is such a sense of trust, such a sense of togetherness, built


up among the crew, you cannot avoid exactly why you're year, and to see


one of your team players being taken away in such a state, it is


deeply distressing. Yes, we have not had an update yet on the


condition of Alexander Woods, the bow man from Oxford, who was


carried out of the boat. For those watching on the world feet, thank


you very much for watching. We are waiting now the presentation to the


winning crew, and also to the winning crew, and also to the


losing crew. You will understand that there will be some delay


because, ideally, we would like to see all crew members there, but at


the moment, that may not be possible, with Alexander Woods


being attended to by medical staff. We wait to hear exactly how or he


is. He is training to be a surgeon, he has been at Oxford for 10 years,


thoroughly enjoying himself. He started rowing at Oxford, did he


not? Yes, he started rowing at Oxford. He learned at his college,


and then he graduated to the lightweight squad. He was one of


the three lightweights in the Oxford boat. When you're a light


weight, you have got to be so efficient and effective, you're


working on the absolute edge of your possibility. So, he worked


himself out, hopefully it is nothing more serious than


exhaustion. He is 12 stone, the lightest man in the race, and you


can contrast that with the 17 stone of someone like Steve Dudek. It is


a huge difference. Absolutely. Alexander Woods has proved himself,


he beat bigger people in the Oxford squad to win that place in the boat,


and that was his dream. I am praying that he is recovering.


presentation delayed at the moment, but Clare Balding is in place at


Mortlake. She is with someone who has been right at the heart of the


action. Over to you. Yes, the news is that there will be no


presentation, because of Alexander Woods being treated by the medical


team. You have been to see him, Matthew. As close as I could get,


he was at least sitting upright, he is having medical attention. What


more can I say? I did not want to interrupt anything, he is receiving


medical attention. But he is conscious and sitting up, and it


has been decided that in those circumstances, we should not have a


big celebration of Cambridge's win, while Alexander Woods is still


being treated. Oxford are obviously very concerned. Extraordinary, I


cannot think of enough adjectives to cover what happened out there.


Busy. It is hard to imagine a Boat Race could contain so much to talk


about. We had an accident, we had a broken blade, we had everything.


Cambridge are over here, just trying to assimilate what actually


happened in that race, and in some way, enjoy this celebration,


without going over the top. I don't think we're going to get the cox


being thrown in the river, any of the usual stuff, because it has


been so difficult. It has been really so strange. When they have


finished talking to each other, we will try to get a few more words


from them. But Matthew, in terms of the difficulties out there for the


rowers, we had the there's a in the river, then we had the clash of


oars. -- the swimmer. Really difficult to be stopped, and then


having the restart. They had to try to get back into position. Then you


had all the Wash, it was quite a cold day, lots of people getting


cold. Then there was the confusion about when it was going to restart.


How quickly the tide has come in, I am worried about your shoes. Here


with me now, the biggest man of either crew, Steve Dudek.


Congratulations - what have you said to each other? Just have a


little bit of class, the best goes out to Alex, we hope he is or right.


We have basically just established that it is a little bit more low-


key, our thoughts are with him. are hearing much better things


about him now. Steve Trapmore, you have won the race, your second year


of coaching the team, but it is a bit flat. Yes, I guess it is not


the ideal way that anybody wants to win. We are more worried about the


state of Alexander Woods at the moment. We will reflect more on the


race later on. How proud were you of your guys, and your young cox,


Ed Bosson, for keeping their heads? Very, actually. We have been doing


a lot of preparation for this race, looking through past races where


there have been restarts and stuff. So we were totally prepared. The


guys did themselves proud today. Well done. A very, very strange


atmosphere. As Steve Dudek was saying, none of the Cambridge crew


are wanting to jump up and down, because Alexander Woods is still


being treated, and because it was such an extraordinary race. They


had to restart, and then they had to go through the second half of


the race, during which there was a clash of blades are, and Hanno


Wienhausen's blade snapped off completely, after which Cambridge


went on to win convincingly. And after the finish, Oxford's


Alexander Woods collapsed. However he is now sitting up, and he is


Clare Balding presents live coverage of the annual rowing battle along London's River Thames between the competing eights of Oxford and Cambridge universities. The first race took place in 1829, and has been held every year since 1856. Oxford took last year's honours and boast a superior recent record, winning eight races to Cambridge's four since the millennium. With commentary from Jonathan Legard, Dan Topolski and Wayne Pommen; and reporting from Sonali Shah and British Olympic legend Matthew Pinsent.

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