The Boat Race 2017, UNIVERSITY ROWING: Oxford v Cambridge

Police patrol the area, prior to the Men's Boat Race on the River Thames, in London., Sunday April 2, 2017.

What followed in the women's reserve race was an even more comprehensive win for Cambridge's second crew Blondie, who beat Oxford's Osiris by 13 lengths.

Relive all of the action with Sportsmail's TOM FARMERY.

Oxford have beaten Cambridge to win the 163rd edition of the men's Boat Race for their fourth victory in the past five years.

On a day when the Cambridge women's team crushed their rivals by 11 lengths in a record time of 18min 33sec after capitalising on a disastrous start in which Oxford's Becca Esselstein nearly lost her oar, racing had been threatened by the discovery of a second world war shell submerged in the murk near the start at Putney Bridge.

The races start on the other side of Putney Bridge, with the women's race at 16:35 BST and the men's race at 17:35 BST.

CUBC were unable to make it two in a row as they suffered a spirited defeat in the Men's Boat Race on the Thames this afternoon.

And victory was assured fairly early on as Cambridge opened a sizeable lead, long before they reached Barnes Bridge.

They swiftly built a quarter-length lead after their more convincing start.

Brothers James and Ollie Cook celebrated together in the Oxford crew, and dedicated their win to their grandfather John, who died just before Christmas.

Blades clashed during the battle with umpire Matthew Pinsent bellowing a warning to both camps, but in the end it was the Dark Blues' day as they secured victory in 17 minutes.

Cambridge cross the finish line first in the women's boat race against Oxford on the Thames.

Team-mate Oliver Cook added: "It wasn't easy". Their rhythm was superb and was able to resist the occasional Cambridge surges in what was an excellent competitive race. You're in a really hard position when you're winning - the pressure is more on you.

  • Leroy Wright