THE Boat Race is back after a two-year absence as Oxford take on Cambridge.
Last year’s event was cancelled in peacetime for the first time in 165 years but the two universities will be back in action this weekend on the river Ouse.
Cambridge achieved a clean sweep in 2019 as all four of their teams won their racesCredit: Getty Images – Getty
Thousands of fans traditionally line the riverbanks of London to watch the Boat Race
Bridges often get crowded to watch Oxford and Cambridge row past
But will they have a crowd roaring them on?
Can I watch the Boat Race in person?
The Oxford and Cambridge crews are used to huge crowds turning out on the Thames to cheer them on.
However, that will not be possible this year.
Even though groups of up to six are allowed to meet outside in the UK, the event will be cordoned off from the general public.
And rather than its traditional location in the capital, it will take place in Ely, Cambridgeshire to keep the crowds away.
A statement on the Boat Race website read: “The Gemini Boat Race will be a ‘closed’ event in 2021, without spectators.
“There will be no access to spectators, to enable one of the world’s oldest and most famous amateur competitions to return to the British sporting calendar in a COVID-secure way.
“We would like to thank all Boat Race fans, and the local communities of Ely and Littleport, for their incredible support and ask them to please help make this a safe and secure event by staying home to watch it on the BBC.
“Working with local stakeholders and all relevant agencies, we are confident of the delivery of a COVID-secure event for the athletes who have been training hard for this race, and for fans watching the event on the BBC.
“The race will be broadcast live on BBC One from 15:00-17:30 on Sunday 4th April.
“Stay safe. Stay away. Watch The Gemini Boat Race 2021 live on the BBC.”
The traditional large crowds will not be watching from the banks and bridges of the River Thames this yearCredit: Marc Aspland – The Times
When are the Boat Races?
- Both races take place on Sunday, April 4.
- The Women’s Boat Race commences at 3.50pm.
- The Men’s Boat Race follows at 4.50pm.
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