Oxford Cambridge Boat Race 2013: Oxford Win 159th Race (PICTURES)

Oxford Beat Cambridge In 2013 Race

Oxford University has beaten Cambridge to win the 2013 boat race, which, although peppered with expletives, passed off smoothly without interruption.

The blue boat raced to victory in 17 minutes 27 seconds, winning by a clear few lengths over Cambridge University, who pipped them to the post last year.

The Oxford winning crew celebrate after beating Cambridge

Oxford president and Christ Church College student Alex Davidson, spoke to The Huffington Post UK shortly before the race about the personal strain of participating in the boat race.

"One of the things people don’t talk about enough is that rowing at this level puts enormous stress on your personal life, and one of the most important things for me was having a really supportive group of friends and my family to lean on and get me through the process.

"Competing in sport at a high level is extremely punishing, at the Boat Race is no different," he continued. "Combining our academics with our training means that the programme is too tough to carry people, so for a start you have to be exceptionally motivated – if you don’t really want to win the race, you won’t be able to handle the training.

"You have to be organised to handle the time commitments, and of course you have to possess the physical attributes to make you a potentially good rower."

The Oxford victory was a well deserved one, after having to contend with a broken blade last year, after the race was interrupted by swimmer Trenton Oldfield, who was later jailed for causing public nuisance.

Due to the weather, the Oxford crew had to move from its usual training ground in Wallingford, Oxfordshire, after the river flooded, to the Redgrave – Pinsent rowing lake at Caversham.

"This year the weather has certainly been challenging," Davidson said. "Throughout the winter we put in the long miles on the machine and on the water, and as we get into the racing season we tend to move to more intense but shorter work."

The 22-year-old, who is studying Chromosome and Developmental Biology, gave a glimpse into the gruelling regime the squad commits to in order to prepare themselves for the race.

"We split our training into three groups; training on the water (which forms the bulk of our training), training on the ergo (which we do about 3 times a week), and weights (which we do once a week).

"We train Tuesday to Friday every morning in the gym starting at 6.30, then I'm in the lab for 9, back to the gym for 1.15 to drive to the river for the afternoon water session, then back to the lab for the evening at 6 pm.

"On weekends we train on the water twice a day both days, and Monday is our day off (training, but not university commitments)."

The presentation to the winning crew was made for the first time ever by a female - gold Olympic medallist Katherine Grainger.

Last year took more than 48 minutes, while Oxford's Alex Woods was taken to hospital after suffering from exhaustion in the Cambridge defeat.


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