Taking Charge of the 2021 Boat Races

James Lee The Boat Race Umpiring

The Boat Race is always umpired by an "Old Blue". The individual races will alternate between an ex-Oxford an an ex-Cambridge Umpire each year. The Race Umpire is there to ensure safe and fair racing for the crews and are supported by a panel who assist with duties including aligning the crews at the start.

In 2021, the Men's Boat Race will be umpired by a female umpire for the first time. Sarah Winckless rowed for Cambridge in 1995, 1996 and 1997, winning all 3 times. She was CUWBC President for her final race in 1997. Sarah is a familiar face to rowers across the country having been a British Rowing Umpire for 9 years. In 2016, Sarah was the first female to umpire a race at Henley Royal Regatta.

For the Women's Race, Judith Packer will be in charge of the flags. Judith is also a familiar face on the National regatta circuit having been a British Rowing umpire since 2001. She progressed to become a World Rowing umpire in 2009 and has officiated at international regattas around the world since. Judith learned to row whilst studying Engineering at Oxford University.

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