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Oxford Women Turn the Tide on Oxford Brookes in Gripping Three-Race Showdown; Cambridge Men Impressive Against Dutch National Team

In a thrilling series of rowing clashes in glorious spring sunshine, the Oxford Women’s team showcased their prowess by turning the tide against hometown rivals Oxford Brookes. The race, featuring three closely fought contests, unfolded with the home team claiming a final win, leaving spectators at the edge of their seats. Meanwhile, the Cambridge Men displayed an impressive performance, securing victories in all three races against the formidable Dutch National Team.

The rivalry between Oxford University and Oxford Brookes is renowned for its intensity, and the recent race lived up to expectations. With just over eight weeks until the Gemini Boat Race, the Oxford Women’s team, under the guidance of Chief Coach Allan French, exhibited the results of their dedicated winter training. The three racing pieces over The Championship Course saw exceptional performances from both undergraduates and graduates, creating a compelling narrative on the water.

Among the standout athletes was Annie Sharp, a graduate from the University of London, who caught the attention of commentator Martin Cross. Sharp, with two successive Henley Royal Regatta wins in the Wargrave Trophy and a record-breaking 2023 campaign, brought valuable experience to the Oxford squad. Accompanied by new additions Lucy Edmunds (Yale) and Tessa Haining (Harvard), the crew blended fresh international perspectives.

President Ella Stadler, who learned to row as an undergraduate at Exeter College, was a key figure in the final winning piece, contributing to the Oxford Women’s triumph. The clash between the two powerhouse teams started just above Putney Bridge and was live-streamed, providing fans with an immersive experience.

After the racing, new coach Allan French had this to say:

“After a great block of training from the squad, it was fantastic to get out and racing this weekend in the first of our Fixture series, against our local rivals Oxford Brookes.

There are no short-cuts to success and the training put in over the last few months has given the squad confidence to take on the best. Margins were tight across the board but the resilience on display was clear to see and no more so than in the Provisional Blue Boat vs Brookes I race where after two 3/4 length losses, the crew was able to turn it round in the third and final piece and win by 1 1/2 lengths.As ever there is much work to do but the group can certainly take lessons learnt on Sunday into training over the next 2-months in the run up to the Boat Races.”

Race Overview: Oxford Women vs. Oxford Brookes

Piece 1 – Start (5 min): Brookes 3/4 Length Lead Piece 2 – Middle (5 min): Brookes 3/4 Length Lead Piece 3 – 5 min to Finish: Oxford Women’s Final Win

We hope you enjoyed the engaging live stream, capturing the crews battling along the course with superb drone footage above Hammersmith Bridge.

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