The Boat Race is on this Sunday and that heralds the official “event” start of Summer for 2014!
This famous race has been going on for so long that it’s now just known as “The Boat Race”. It’s the classic race between Oxford and Cambridge Universities, that for some reason is held down in London (neutral territory?) This year is the 160th year that the race has occurred, that’s one year less than New Zealand has been a country for!
The race starts at 5.55pm on the Saturday and starts at Putney Bridge and ending at Chiswick Bridge. The event is broadcast live on the BBC, but if you go along in person it’s much more about the whole day/event that just the race.. as if you watch the boats when they go by they fly by pretty quickly.. boat watching is probably much less than a couple of minutes!
It’s a great atmosphere with lots of people going to all the different pubs that line the river, or just turning up with a picnic and a group of friends to watch the race. There’s obviously a lot of posh Cambridge and Oxford students who go along to support their teams as well. This race is taken very seriously as the rowers typically train for six days a week for six months before the race, some past rowers have included Olympians and even Hugh Laurie (from “House”).
When you are there just remember there is a Reserve Race that takes place before the actual event.
If you want a good spot to go and check out the race, I’d suggest any of the pubs along beside Hammersmith Bridge. Have some drinks, food and relax, while they often have a big screen in the park nearby to see the race on. We like The Old Ship, Hammersmith as a great pub for viewing, they have live bands you can listen to before/after the race and they even do great Sunday Roasts when it’s not a Boat Race day.