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Boat races expected to go ahead after wartime bomb found in Thames

Cambridge eventually secured victory in 18 minutes, 34 seconds and with an 11-length lead.

Oxford got the better of the two starts, drawing away from the stake-boat to establish an early advantage. The risky manoeuvre then left them a length behind and at a significant disadvantage heading into a crucial stage of the course.

This year saw both boats make it to the finish line without taking on water - the fate that unfortunately befell the Cambridge Women's team last year.

One of the more intriguing subplots of this year's race was the presence of William Warr in the Oxford bow seat against his former university.

The women's race should start at 4.35pm with the men's commencing an hour later.

There was never anything more than a length between the crews, and it was visible that they were making progress at times, but Oxford would then respond to edge back their leading margin.

Cambridge's ladies are farther ahead of their Oxford counterparts with 41 wins to 30.

This will be the men's 163rd race and the women's 72nd race. Oxford finished in 19 minutes, five seconds.

There were doubts about whether the race could go ahead, with the discovery of an unexploded World War Two bomb near Putney Bridge; nevertheless, the ordinance was removed, and the races carried on as scheduled.

Police were called on Saturday after a member of the public spotted the device in the River Thames near Putney Bridge, yards from where the rowing event will get under way.

After the men's race Oxford's Michael di Santo, who competed for the United States at the Rio Olympics a year ago, told BBC One: "There is nothing like it".

He said: "In my three boat races that is going to be my favourite".

Team-mate Oliver Cook added: "It wasn't easy".