Cambridge University enter The Boat Race 2019 as defending champions and will look to beat Oxford in successive years for the first time since 1999. Oxford University trail their fierce rivals 83-80 in overall Boat Race victories but will hope to turn the tide back in their favour on Sunday, April 7 to claim what would be a fifth win in seven years.
The 165th edition of The Boat Race will see some of the most elite rowing talents based in the United Kingdom go head to head in a battle that dates back to 1829. Oxford were the victors in that inaugural race, but they face a challenge in coming back after losing by three lengths last year.
Felix Drinkall will captain Oxford University in what will be his second Boat Race appearance, having made the cut as a fresher in 2018. He’ll lead a squad made up of rowers from the United States, Australia, Belgium, Great Britain, France, Germany, Greece, South Africa and Switzerland, per the official Boat Race website.
Dara Alizadeh was part of the Cambridge University crew that blitzed its way to triumph in 2018, and he returns as captain one year later. He heads up a squad that contains Australian, American, Bermudian, Belgian, British, Dutch, Iranian, Italian, French, Japanese, Polish and South African nationalities.
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It’s been 20 years since Cambridge last successfully defended their crown in London, and new head coach Rob Baker will soon get his first experience at the helm of a Blue Boat.
Baker previously coached Cambridge’s women to Boat Race glory in 2017 and 2018, but he faces a challenge in making the transition to the men’s race. That being said, it’s crucial to point out Baker has the experience of already taking part in—and winning—The Boat Race in the past with CUWBC.
His counterpart, Sean Bowden, has been in charge of his team since 1997, since which Oxford have won 12 of the 22 races held. As slight as that advantage may be, his wisdom will be key to not only navigating the course but keeping his crew composed.
What’s more, the two teams have found it hard to keep momentum in The Boat Race in recent years, swapping the title back and forth in the past three editions. If that trend is to keep up in April, a motivated Oxford outfit could be fated to win their 81st Boat Race.
The Boat Race 2019 will take place on Sunday, April 7 and is scheduled to begin at 3:15 p.m. GMT (10:15 a.m. ET). BBC One will once again handle broadcasting responsibilities for the university showcase between two longstanding school rivals, each in some shade of blue or another (Oxford being darker blue and Cambridge somewhat closer to a periwinkle).
The Women’s Boat Race 2019 will be held immediately before the men’s edition and will get underway at 2:15 p.m. GMT (9:15 a.m. ET).
The Boat Race 2019 Betting & Odds
You can bet on The Boat Race 2019 at William Hill, BetAmerica, Ladbrokes, Betfair. Odds are normally available 3 weeks prior the event and can be checked at odds betting sites like Oddschecker. American citizens can wager on water sports via legal betting apps such as BetAmerica app. Also, remember, that first time depositors receive welcome bonus, which is normally 100% of your first deposit. Wagering terms and conditions apply.
Where to Get Tickets
The Boat Race is free to watch in London, and spectators can attend one of many vantage points along the Championship Course. The official Boat Race website lists Putney Bridge, Chiswick Pier, Barn Elms Boathouse and Dukes Meadow as just some of the best locations to watch the head-to-head.
This will be just the fourth time in Boat Race history that the men’s, women’s and each reserves race will be held on the Tideway (the part of the River Thames that is subject to tides) on the same day.
Photo by Powerboat Nation