The Cambridge and Oxford crews for The Boat Race 2024

The Cambridge and Oxford crews for The Boat Race 2024 have been officially unveiled at a crew announcement held at the iconic Battersea Power Station.

The 36 student rowers who have won a place in the Blue Boat were announced at the event which was held in public for the first time in the Boat Races’ history.

The crews for the Women’s Race were unveiled first of all, and the Cambridge crew will feature two returning faces, Jenna Armstrong and Carina Graf, but for the others it is their first time in the coveted Blue Boat.

The crews for the Men’s Race were then unveiled, and this year there are five returning Blues: Seb Benzecry, Noam Mouelle, Tom Lynch, Luca Ferraro and Matt Edge.

The full line-ups are as follows:

Cambridge Women’s Blue Boat

Cox: Hannah Murphy     (Girton - MPhil Health, Medicine and Society)
Stroke: Megan Lee (Lucy Cavendish - MPhil  Management)
7: Iris Powell (Churchill - BA Natural Sciences)
6: Carys Earl (Gonville and Caius - BA Medicine)
5: Carina Graf    (Emmanuel - PhD Neuro Sci)
4: Jenna Armstrong (Jesus - PhD Physiology)
3: Clare Hole (St Catharine’s - MPhil Population Health Sciences)
2: Jo Matthews (St John’s - BA Medicine (Clinical))
Bow: Gemma King (St John’s - MRes + PhD Stem Cell Biology)

Cambridge Men’s Blue Boat

Cox: Ed Bracey (Wolfson - MPhil Economics)
Stroke: Matt Edge (St Catharine’s - PhD Chem Eng)
7: Luca Ferraro (King’s - BA Classics)
6: Tom Lynch (Hughes Hall - PhD Engineering)
5: Kenny Coplan (Hughes Hall - MPhil History of Art)
4: Gus John (Wolfson - MPhil Medieval History)
3: Thomas Marsh (St John’s - PhD Physics)
2: Noam Mouelle (Hughes Hall - PhD Astrophysics)
Bow: Seb Benzecry (Jesus - PhD Film Studies)

Asked by the host of the event, BBC Sport commentator Andrew Cotter, about whether there was a challenge integrating new faces into the Blue Boat, Cambridge Women’s Coach Patrick Ryan said: “Actually there are no new faces, every single one of them is a returner – just new Blues!”

The Cambridge Men’s and Women’s clubs unified in 2020 and Patrick added: “As we’ve become one club, we’ve learned to share more information and work together, hopefully for the betterment of the athletes here tonight.”

Cambridge Men’s Coach Rob Baker was then asked whether the number of returning Blues in the Men’s Boat would give Cambridge an advantage.

“Every year is different, every year is a challenge,” said Rob. “It’s great to have guys that have won the race and been through the process before, but yes it’s always a big challenge but we are up for it”.

It was the first time that Battersea Power Station, which famously featured on a Pink Floyd album cover, has hosted the crew announcement event. Siobhan Cassidy, Chair of the Boat Race Company Limited, said the venue was appropriate, given that it was designed by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott, who was also behind iconic buildings at Cambridge and Oxford, including Cambridge University Library.

She added: “[The Boat Race] is the ultimate British tradition, which draws on its heritage yet, with boats full of young students, it is very much an event that looks to the future.

“These young people have a unique opportunity to take to the water on such a high profile day. In order to get there they have made incredible choices. They have combined a full-time rigorous academic schedule with training and racing throughout the year - so let’s not underestimate how impressive these young people really are”.

The Gemini Boat Race 2024 takes place in Putney, London, on Saturday 30 March  – with the Women’s Race starting at 14:46 BST and the Men’s Race at 15:46 BST – renewing an intense rivalry which stretches back nearly 200 years. The event will be broadcast live on BBC One from 14:00 BST.

Last year saw Cambridge University win both the men’s and women’s races, leaving the overall records as 86-81 in the favour of Cambridge Men’s and 47-30 in the favour of Cambridge Women’s.

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