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ROWING: Oxford coach Bowden makes light of weight difference
3:58pm Friday 9th March 2012 in Sport
Coach Sean Bowden was unfazed that Oxford will enter the 158th Xchanging Boat Race on April 7 with a ten-stone disadvantage – the second greatest weight difference ever, writes Mike Rosewell.
“You have to carry yourself for the whole distance,” said Bowden.
“It becomes a challenge if somebody has to carry a bit of your weight”.
At Monday’s announcement of the crews in the shadow of the Olympic Stadium, both presidents played down the importance of weight differences.
Karl Hudspith, the only returning Blue from Oxford’s 2011 winning crew, said: “It’s a big difference, but it’s a very long race and you have to have the power to carry that weight down the course.”
History shows us that in 1988, 1990 and 2005 Oxford won with a similar weight advantage, but Bowden re-members 2003 when Cambridge were more than a stone per man heavier, and Oxford won by one foot.
Overall, heavier crews have won 18 of the past 30 races.
Oxford are the older crew at an average of 25 years to 23, and more experienced while Cambridge have the advantage of height.
The Light Blues will include only one British challenger.
The two coxes are both British, postgraduate Zoe De Toledo for Oxford and Ed Bosson, a first-year undergraduate who went to Radley College, for Cambridge.
BOAT RACE LINE-UPS.
Oxford: bow A Woods 12st 4lb, 2 W Zeng 13.0, 3 K Baum 14.6, 4 H Wienhausen 14.10, 5 K Hudspith 14.5, 6 A Davidson 14.13, 7 D Harvey 12.7, stroke R Haen 15.3, cox Z de Toledo 7.11.
Cambridge: bow M Schramm 14.6, 2 J Lindeman 14.3, 3 M Thorp 14.6, 4 D Nelson 14.9, 5 A Scharp 15.1, 6 S Dudek 17.4, 7 A Ross 16.1, stroke N Garratt 14.7, cox E Bosson 8.11.