25 March 2018
Saturday, 24 March 2018 may have been an overcast, chilly afternoon on the Thames – but victories in both the Women's Boat Race and the Men's Boat Race warmed the spirits of every Cambridge supporter.
We proudly cheered on Lucy Cavendish student Myriam Goudet-Boukhatmi, Captain of Cambridge University’s Blue Boat, as the all-female crew powered past the finishing post in 19 mins and 10 seconds.
The Cambridge University Women’s Boat Club (CUWBC) team entered the race as favourites to win. Myriam was one of three returning rowers from Cambridge's victorious 2017 crew. They led from the off, cruising home to clinch the first back-to-back win since 1999, and Cambridge's 43rd victory in 73 races. A win for CUWBC's second team in the Women's Reserve Race resulted in a double celebration for the club.
In a pre-race interview with the BBC, Melissa Wilson, Lucy Cavendish alumni and World Championship rower, recalled her own “special collection of memories” of the Boat Race. Evaluating the 2018 crew, Melissa commented that: “they are strong as rowers, they are also strong as personalities.”
After the event, Myriam Goudet-Boukhatmi, who is studying a PhD in Plant Sciences, reflected on her experience: "It is still hard to realise what happened. I'm incredibly proud of what we achieved as a crew. At the beginning of the year Rob (our coach) asked us what legacy we wanted to leave and I think we achieved more than we hoped for. It was just amazing for us to win, but on top of it everybody won (both Cambridge Blue Boats and reserve crews). Sometimes, the most intense emotions are the simplest and Saturday was just pure joy. We tried to work a lot more with the men's crew this year and it showed that we are stronger together.
The lead up to the race was very good. We arrived in London a week before the race and really stepped up training. Personally, it has been hard to come back this year but it was definitely worth it. I'm completely overwhelmed by the support I received from the College, the Boat Club, friends and family. Cambridge is a family and I'll never forget it. Finally, on top of that Melissa Wilson talked to the BBC and she was absolutely brilliant! I felt very honoured to represent Lucy Cavendish College once again."
Jackie Ashley, President of Lucy Cavendish College commented: “This is a fantastic achievement after so much hard work – well done to all the Cambridge crew and especially to Myriam.”
Photo credits: Naomi Baker and CUWBC