Clean sweep 2023

Cambridge’s Openweight crews complete a clean sweep against Oxford


On a cold and blustery day on the Thames, Cambridge’s crews swept the board to hand Oxford’s crews and clubs a comprehensive defeat and cap off a week where Cambridge’s crews from Lightweight to Veterans to Spares and Openweight were victorious.

CUBC is glad to report that the two Oxford oarsmen who were taken to hospital for observation after their races are now in fine condition and have recovered well.

Gemini Women’s Boat Race

Early indicators were for a successful race, as President Caoimhe Dempsey won the toss, choosing Surrey and indicating her confidence in her crew’s abiliity to manage Oxford’s predicted fast start and take the advantage in the long Surrey Bend.

Choppy conditions favoured the Oxford crew on Middlesex, but cox James Trotman focused on developing rhythm in his crew, drawing level as the crews rounded the Fulham Bend and taking the lead up Crabtree Reach. Cambridge took nearly a length lead at Harrods, and moved into the faster water with Oxford pushing for contact before the crews shot Hammersith Bridge. Near-contact turned into a two length lead by St. Paul’s and Dempsey and her crew were able to impose their will on the Race.

The Race became a victory lap for CUBC, as the lead stretched to 3 lengths at Chiswick Eyot as Oxford’s cox, Caius alumna Tara Slade, sought to motivate her crew. Cambridge maintained total control and crossed the line four and a half lengths clear as exultant victors for the sixth consecutive time in the Women’s Boat Race.

Re-watch HERE

2023 Women's Boat Race

The Gemini Men’s Boat Race

CUBC’s Men would seek to retain the title of 2021, and the bookmakers’ favouritism of OUBC would seem to have been bolstererd when Oxford won and chose Surrey. A clean and fast start from both crews ensued, but the first minutes of the Race would be marked by the move that would define this edition of the Race, as cox Jasper Parish struck for the shelter of the Fulham Wall, recognising the conditions and the relatively slow incoming tide which made the unconventional course hugely effective as CUBC moved to a 3/4 length lead up the reach.

Umpire Tony Reynolds was kept busy as the crews came up to Harrods, warning Cambridge as the bow of the Oxford boat came close to Cambridge and OUBC sought to make contact, but CUBC shot Hammersmith with a clear water lead. The Surrey Bend provided the opportunity for OUBC to make a difference but CUBC was able to hold margin as the crews were directed to their stations and prepared for the Barnes bend by pushing their lead to a length and a half. under Barnes Bridge.

OUBC were not to be daunted and sought to surge around the outside and began their sprint more than two minutes out from the finish. CUBC’s stern 3 of Parish, Ferraro, and Parish, remained calm and decided not to sprint but instead to maintain control, crossing the line with a 1 1/3 length margin over OUBC.

Celebrations were instant, but on the hard were subdued with the crew’s concern for their OUBC competitors. Once the all-clear was received, the Club’s 36 victorious athletes, along with their coaches, celebrated on the presentation stand and well into the night at the Club’s Dinner.

Watch the race HERE

The Blondie-Osiris Match

Coach Autumn Mantell and her Blondie crew sought to take their seventh consecutive victory in the reserve races, with a strong lineup including previous Blondies along with lightweight Blue Gemma King. Taking Surrey for the race, both crews appeared evenly matched and came together along the boats, with Osiris appearing to take the best of the encounter.

Blondie were undaunted and soon hit their rhythm, handling the rough water better than Osiris and pulling out to a length’s lead at the end of the Fulham bend, which they used to move in front of Osiris by Harrods and dictate the course, which they used to their advantage, taking a 3 length lead at Barnes Bridge. The triumphant Blondie crew maintained the lead in their stretch to the line, revelling in their win and handing the baton to Goldie as they sought to win their own race and build a Cambridge clean sweep.

Watch the race HERE

The Goldie-Isis Match

Taking the same Middlesex station as the Men’s Blue Boat, Goldie would seek to re-take their title from 2021, and be the first winning Goldie on the Tideway since 2019. Isis took a slightly better start, bulding a lead of a few seats along the boats, but Goldie started to come through by a few seats of their own. The initial portion of the Fulham bend was not conclusive, but in the second half Goldie took a half length lead but could not break through as Isis were warned for their steering at the Mile Post.

Isis pushed back past Harrods, and would have counted themselves lucky as the Surrey Bend loomed into view and as they led by 4 seats under Hammersmith Bridge. Goldie were unfazed, and commenced a Surrey Bend for the ages, pulling back to level as the crews reached Chiswick Eyot, taking a two seat lead along the Eyot, but Isis came back to level in the last turn of the bend.

From there, the course advantage turned to Cambridge as Goldie surged and took 3 seats at the bandstand which they stretched to a half length at Barnes Bridge and made every post a winner as they hit clear water by the Stag brewery and maintained a length lead at the line.

Watch the race HERE

RaceWinnerMarginTime
The Women’s Boat RaceCambridge4.5 L20m 29s
The Women’s Reserve Boat RaceBlondie3 L21m 20s
The Men’s Boat RaceCambridge1 1/3 L18m 18s
The Men’s Reserve Boat RaceGoldie1 L18m 23s