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The Boat Race Of The North


The Boat Race Of The North is returning this year to the Newcastle Gateshead Quayside. It will be held between the rowing teams of both Newcastle and Durham Universities and will be on the Newcastle-Gateshead Quayside on the evening on 9th May 2015.

The race will begin under Redheugh Bridge and will finish just after Millenium Bridge (Approx 1500m away). This prestigious battle on the Tyne began in 1997 (although rowing races ono the Tyne can be traced back as early as the 1820’s) and ran as an annual competition until it stopped in 2010. After a five year sabbatical, the race is finally back and both Universities are hungrier than ever.

Although far from being on a par with the Oxford and Cambridge ‘Boat Race’ this is an event that used to gather thousands of spectators down to the quayside, and organisers are hoping the return of the 2015 Boat Race will be as big as ever.

There will be 4 races in all The Clasper Trophy (Men’s Senior Eights), The Chambers Race (Women’s Senior Eights), The Renforth Trophy (Freshmen), The Taylor Trophy (Freshwomen), with the overall Uni taking home the cup. Durham have won 8, Newcastle 3, with one draw.


The course starts by the Redheugh Bridge. It starts out pretty straight and there are two crucial moments where the race can be won or lost. The first is as the crews go through the Swing Bridge. For about 30 seconds under the bridge you can’t actually see your opponents as you go through different arches, so it is not uncommon for crews to put in a push to try and surprise each other. Newcastle have a history of being behind at the Swing Bridge but being ahead coming out the other side.

Racing on the Tyne requires a great deal of skill as the water is very bumpy in the centre of town.

The second key point is going through the Tyne Bridge. This is where there is only about 400m left of rowing and the Gateshead side has a slight advantage due to the corner.