Dark Blue women in control

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The Independent Online

The Dark Blue fashion was extended from the Tideway to Henley, where Oxford won both of the women's Boat Races, writes Hugh Matheson.

Cambridge had been defeated by Oxford in the Women's Head of the River Race two weeks ago, but opinions on yesterday's race were mixed amid tales of Light Blue collisions and leaking boats. In fact, the Oxford camp was the more confused when they lost their captain and coach midway through the term.

Oxford won the toss and chose the Bucks station to the north. They had learned from their reserves earlier that the umpire, Di Ellis, would let them press hard to capture the stream. Off the start, with both crews settled at 37, Oxford began to build a lead, adding a little at each signal, and shortly after Remenham they were clear. From Fawley to the finish the Dark Blues were in control and only surrendered a quarter length when well ahead in the last minute.

The lightweight men's race went to Cambridge, who produced a clean, decisive style that was smoother into the catch of the stroke and longer in the water to the finish. The winning margin was two lengths for the only Light Blue first boat to win in the four matches over the weekend.

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