This is a good article. Follow the link for more information.

The Boat Race 1988

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

134th Boat Race
Date 2 April 1988
Winner Oxford
Margin of victory 5 12 lengths
Winning time 18 minutes 27 seconds
Overall record
Umpire Mike Sweeney
Other races
Reserve winner Goldie
Women's winner Oxford

The 134th Boat Race took place on 2 April 1988. Held annually, the event is a side-by-side rowing race between crews from the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge along the River Thames. Oxford won by ​5 12 lengths in a time of 18 minutes 27 seconds, the equal-fourth fastest time in the event's history. The race was umpired by former Cambridge rowing Blue Mike Sweeney.

In the reserve race, Cambridge's Goldie won, while Oxford won the Women's Boat Race.


The Boat Race is a side-by-side rowing competition between the University of Oxford (sometimes referred to as the "Dark Blues")[1] and the University of Cambridge (sometimes referred to as the "Light Blues").[1] First held in 1829, the race takes place on the 4.2-mile (6.8 km) Championship Course on the River Thames in southwest London.[2] The rivalry is a major point of honour between the two universities and followed throughout the United Kingdom and broadcast worldwide.[3][4] Oxford went into the race as reigning champions, having won the 1987 race by four lengths,[5] with Cambridge leading overall with 69 victories to Oxford's 64 (excluding the "dead heat" of 1877).[6] The event was sponsored by Beefeater Gin and was televised in the United Kingdom by the BBC on its Grandstand sports programme.[7]

The first Women's Boat Race took place in 1927, but did not become an annual fixture until the 1960s. Until 2014, the contest was conducted as part of the Henley Boat Races, but as of the 2015 race, it is held on the River Thames, on the same day as the men's main and reserve races.[8] The reserve race, contested between Oxford's Isis boat and Cambridge's Goldie boat has been held since 1965. It usually takes place on the Tideway, prior to the main Boat Race.[5]


Oxford weighed in with the heaviest crew in Boat Race history – on average the rowers weighed 14 st 11.5 lb (93.9 kg), 11 lb more per man than Cambridge.[9] Oxford's Gavin Stewart, at 6 ft 8.5 in (2.04 m) was the tallest rower in the history of the Boat Race.[7] Cambridge's crew included four former Blues while Oxford's featured six.[7] Oxford's coaching team included Canadian international coach Mike Spracklen.[7]

Matt Brittin (pictured in 2012) rowed at stroke for Cambridge.
Seat Oxford
University of Cambridge coat of arms.svg
Name College Weight Name College Weight
Bow Hugh Pelham Christ Church 13 st 7.5 lb R S N Ames Trinity 14 st 0.5 lb
2 Paul Gleeson Hertford 15 st 1 lb M J K Smith Magdalene 14 st 8 lb
3 Richard Hull Oriel 14 st 7.5 lb J C T Pepperell Sidney Sussex 15 st 2 lb
4 Chris G Penny (P) St John's 15 st 13.5 lb R A B Spink Downing 13 st 12 lb
5 Tom A D Cadoux-Hudson New College 14 st 6 lb Jim R Garman (P) Lady Margaret Boat Club 14 st 6 lb
6 Gavin B Stewart Wadham 16 st 4 lb Guy Pooley Lady Margaret Boat Club 13 st 7.5 lb
7 Jonny Searle Christ Church 13 st 13 lb Nicholas J Grundy Jesus 12 st 2.5 lb
Stroke Michael Gaffney Hertford 14 st 13 lb Matthew J Brittin Robinson 14 st 7 lb
Cox Andy Lobbenberg Balliol 8 st 5 lb S J Loveridge Trinity 8 st 11.5 lb
(P) – boat club president


The Championship Course along which the Boat Race is contested

The race took place on 2 April 1988. Oxford started as pre-race favourites,[7] and having won the toss, elected to start from the Surrey station.[10] Immediately from the start, the umpire was called into action, warning both coxes for steering too closely to one another. Cambridge took a slight lead but Oxford soon recovered to become level, and by the Mile Post were three seconds ahead.[10] Shortly after, the Cambridge number 7, Nick Grundy caught a crab, causing his boat to "shudder to a halt."[10] Oxford slowly extended their lead; nine seconds ahead at Hammersmith Bridge, eleven seconds by the Chiswick Steps and fifteen by Barnes Bridge. Oxford passed the finishing post 16 seconds ahead of Cambridge, winning by ​5 12 lengths in a time of 18 minutes 27 seconds, the equal-fourth fastest time in the event's history.[10]

In the reserve race, Cambridge's Goldie won by ​5 12 lengths in a time of 17 minutes and 55 seconds, their second consecutive victory.[5] Oxford won the 43rd Women's Boat Race with their third victory in four years.[5]


The Beefeater Gin Trophy was presented by Denis Thatcher.[7] Grundy said of his crab: "I feathered my oar after a stroke and the tip caught the water, which plunged it back in."[10] Oxford Boat Club president Chris Penny said "It was not an easy race but it was enjoyable. We kept our heads, found our rhythm and moved back and through them."[10]


  1. ^ a b "Dark Blues aim to punch above their weight". The Observer. 6 April 2003. Retrieved 7 July 2014.
  2. ^ Smith, Oliver (25 March 2014). "University Boat Race 2014: spectators' guide". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 7 July 2014.
  3. ^ "Former Winnipegger in winning Oxford–Cambridge Boat Race crew". CBC News. 6 April 2014. Retrieved 7 July 2014.
  4. ^ "TV and radio". The Boat Race Company Limited. Retrieved 7 July 2014.
  5. ^ a b c d "Boat Race – Results". The Boat Race Company Limited. Retrieved 12 June 2014.
  6. ^ {{Cite web | url= | publisher = The Boat Race Company Limited | title = Classic moments – the 1877 dead heat | accessdate = 3 July 2014}| archiveurl = | archivedate= 28 October 2014}
  7. ^ a b c d e f g Railton, Jim (2 April 1988). "Oxford weight their Achilles' heel". The Times (63044). p. 34.
  8. ^ "A brief history of the Women's Boat Race". The Boat Race Company Limited. Archived from the original on 6 October 2014. Retrieved 5 July 2014.
  9. ^ a b Railton, Jim (29 March 1988). "Oxford establish records at Boat Race weigh-in". The Times (63041). p. 48.
  10. ^ a b c d e f Railton, Jim (4 April 1988). "Victory rides with the lucky". The Times (63046). p. 22.

External links

  • Official website
Retrieved from ""
This content was retrieved from Wikipedia :
This page is based on the copyrighted Wikipedia article "The Boat Race 1988"; it is used under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License (CC-BY-SA). You may redistribute it, verbatim or modified, providing that you comply with the terms of the CC-BY-SA