The Boat Races

On April 11, men’s and women’s rowing boat races were held on the River Thames in London, United Kingdom between the country’s two famous universities, Oxford and Cambridge. The men’s race is called “The BNY Mellon Boat Race” and is also known as just “The Boat Race”. The women’s race is called “The Newton Women’s Boat Race”. The distance of the races is 6.8 km (4.2 mile), and the races are an annual tradition. This year, Oxford won both the races.

The Boat Race started in 1829, when two friends who went to the two universities challenged each other to a race. Cambridge has won 81 times. Oxford is close behind with 79 wins. The two tied one year. For the women’s race, Oxford has won 29 times, and Cambridge 41 times.

Oxford is the oldest university in the English-speaking world. The university does not have a date of foundation, but some form of teaching existed at Oxford in the year 1096. The University of Cambridge was founded in 1209 by some scholars from Oxford. Famous authors whose books you might have read studied at Oxford. Some of them are C.S. Lewis, the author of “Chronicles of Narnia”, Lewis Carroll (Charles Dodgson), the author of “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”, and J.R.R. Tolkien, the author of “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy.

Did you know?

Harvard University (in USA) was named after a graduate from Cambridge called John Harvard.

Did you know?

According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the “oldest existing, and continually operating educational institution in the world” is the University of Karueein, founded in 859 AD in Fez, Morocco.

Image Credits: http://theboatraces.org/ for the Men’s and Women’s Boat Race images, http://www.ox.ac.uk/ for Oxford University’s image
Sources: http://theboatraces.org/, http://www.ox.ac.uk/ , http://www.harvard.edu/, http://www.johnharvard.us/, http://www.guinnessworldrecords.com/