Boat Race 2010

4 April 2010, 07:34

Oxford have been beaten by Cambridge in the 156th University Boat Race.

It's the Light Blues' first win in three years.  The crew were the underdogs in the race, which took place on the River Thames in London on Saturday 3 April 2010.

The President of the Oxford University Boat Club, Sjoerd Hamburger, said "It is more than painful.  We had a canvass overlap but we couldn't finish it off and we slowly ran into trouble."

For Oxford coach Sean Bowden it was a first defeat since 2007 and only his fourth in 12 years as Dark Blues coach.

"The guys are going to be absolutely devastated," he said.  "They gave it everything and believed they had a good chance to win and they'll just have to dig deep."

Cambridge stuck with Oxford through the sweeping Surrey bend, refusing to allow the Dark Blues to gain any advantage as the Tideway turned in their favour.

Twelve months ago, it was on that exact same stretch of the Thames that Cambridge's victory bid faltered and so McEachern knew just how significant it was.

As the crews passed St Paul's School, around halfway through the gruelling four-and-a-quarter mile race, McEachern knew Cambridge had it.

Oxford could not build on their quarter-length lead and as the river turned back towards Middlesex, the Light Blues pulled ahead to win by one-and-a-third lengths.

Cambridge president Deaglan McEachern said: "I have been in crews that thought they were going to win and haven't.  I knew this crew had a chance to win and I told them to go out there and take it.

"All we really wanted was a chance to win. We went out there, executed what we had planned and trained for and came away with the victory.  It is affirmation of everything we have been doing all year.  I knew if we stuck at them we would be the crew who would hold on at the end."

After McEachern put last year's defeat down to a lack of mental toughness, Cambridge's preparations began last September with a brutal 48 hour training course with the Marines.

And those foundations proved invaluable as Cambridge stuck with Oxford through the crucial middle section.

"We proved we are a tough crew out there," McEachern added.  "The whole race is a confidence game. I knew from last year what it was like to get walked through on the inside.

"It felt as if Oxford were giving it some ginger from the start but we knew we just had to hold on a little bit more and a little bit more."

Each time the river turned sharper in Oxford's favour, Cambridge stayed right on their shoulder.

"At St Paul's they weren't walking away from us and it felt pretty good," McEachern continued.  "This race started last year and we finally finished it."

It was a special victory for Henry Pelly, last year's Cambridge president who was having a final shot at Boat Race glory after successive defeats.

"I couldn't open my eyes as we crossed the line," he said.

Cambridge also won the reserve team race, with Goldie storming from behind to beat Oxford's Isis.

While McEarchan and the whole Cambridge club looked forward to enjoying "whatever the night holds in store", the Oxford crew was a picture of misery.

You can leave a commiserations message for the Dark Blues by using the form below.

Boat Race 2010 crews

Bow - Ben Myers (Exeter – GB)
2 - Martin Walsh (Green Templeton – Ire)
3 - Tyler Winklevoss (Christ Church – USA)
4 - Cameron Winklevoss (Christ Church – USA)
5 - Sjoerd Hamburger (Oriel – Ned)
6 - Matt Evans (University – Can/GB)
7 - Simon Gawlik (Kellogg – Ger)
Stroke - Charlie Burkitt (Wolfson – GB)
Cox - Adam Barhamand (Wolfson – USA)

Bow - Rob Weitemeyer (St. Edmund’s – Can)
2 - Geoff Roth (St. Edmund’s – Can)
3 - George Nash (St. Catharine’s – GB)
4 - Peter McCelland (Pembroke – Can)
5 - Deaglan McEachern (Hughes Hall – USA)
6 - Henry Pelly (St. Edmund’s – GB)
7 - Derek Rasmussen (Hughes Hall – USA)
Stroke - Fred Gill (Hughes Hall – GB)
Cox - Ted Randolph (Peterhouse – GB)