Caoimhe Dempsey (27) topped off a superb run with a third successive win in the Women’s Boat Race in London today. The ex-Trinity oarswoman was chosen to represent Cambrige in 2020 only to see the race abandoned due to Covid. She came into the crew in 2021 and 2022, winning on both occasions. And today she stroked a new outfit – she was the one remaining rower – to a four-and-a-quarter length victory over a gutsy Oxford crew.
The conditions at the start were quite rough and Oxford dealt well with them and pushed into a small lead. Dempsey’s crew refused to be rattled. They fought their way past the crew in dark blue, took over in the lead and pushed their stern ahead of the Oxford bow – missing it by a small margin. The umpire repeatedly warned Cambridge, but once they had the advantage they used it to the full in the better water to the end. An Oxford objection was not successful.
“That was a whirlwind of a race,” Dempsey told BBC Sport. “The conditions changed so much from start to finish. I’m so proud; it is still sinking in. The girls are so tenacious, strong and brave.”
On the near collision, Dempsey added: “That is the nature of the Boat Race. It makes it so exciting.”
It was a very good day for the light blues as the men’s crew won a stirring battle in the second race.
Dempsey represented Ireland at Under-23 level. She will complete her studies in the autumn and intends to return to Ireland.