Ready to row: oars poised for the Welsh Varsity Boat Race

Swansea and Cardiff universities go toe to toe and oar to oar on Saturday 21 April in the annual Welsh Varsity Boat Race.

All eyes will be on the River Tawe once again as the Cardiff Rowing Club look to seek revenge for last year’s defeat by Swansea.

Established in 2006, the annual boat race sees students from Wales' two premier rowing Universities go head-to-head in the battle for the title of Welsh Varsity Boat Race Champions. 

Last year Swansea took the overall title for the first time in the competition’s history, winning three out of the four contested races, as well as securing the fourth win in a row for the Senior Men.

Swansea University Rowing Club

Members of Swansea University Rowing Club celebrate winning the overall rowing title in last year's Varsity

The day will see five races rowed between competing eights:

  • Novice Women’s VIII 10.10am
  • Novice Men's VIII 11.45am
  • Mixed alumni race 12.35pm
  • Senior Women’s First VIII 1.30pm
  • Senior Men’s First VIII 2.20pm

‌The races are rowed on the River Tawe, starting just downstream of the Hafod Copperworks to the sail bridge, over a distance of approximately two kilometres.

The best vantage points for spectators to view the races include A483, A4067 and Marina sail bridges as well as open footpaths along both banks on the latter part of the course.

Dominic Bright, Swansea University Rowing Club President, said: "The Welsh Varsity Boat Race is one of the highlights of our competitive calendar, both as a start to the regatta season and for the chance to throw down with our local rivals in Cardiff. The event is only getting bigger year on year and the bragging rights more so!"

The majority of the Welsh Varsity games take place on Wednesday, 25 April, at the University’s Sports Village on Sketty Lane, culminating with the showpiece rugby match at the Liberty Stadium at 7pm.