Cambridge University Lightweight Rowing Club (CULRC) was founded in 1974 for the sole purpose of winning the Lightweight Boat Race against the Oxford Lightweights. The race has been held at Henley in March or April every year since 1975, currently Cambridge leads by 24 to 16. In addition members of the club have won medals at both national and international competitions, and athletes who have represented CULRC have competed at each of the last three Olympic games.

2017 Boat Races – Reports


Slightly disappointed by the cancellation of the Eights Head of the River the previous day, Granta readjusted their focus to the reserve VIIIs race at the Henley Boat Races. The cross-headwind against stream conditions were familiar to the crew, who had been training on very similar water on the Tideway in the few days preceding the race. Nephthys won the toss and chose the Buckinghamshire station.

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CULRC Win the 2017 Lightweight Boat Race

Congratulations to this year’s CULRC crew have defended their title, winning the 2017 boat race by 1 3/4 lengths in a time of 6:07.

In warm and sunny conditions, but against a strong headwind, Cambridge maintained a solid rhythm throughout. Although Oxford fought hard in the latter stages of the race, there was too much to be done, and CULRC crossed the line with clear water to their opposition.


Invitation to Trial – 2017/18

Invitations to trial for the Cambridge University Lightweight Rowing Club are now open for oarsmen and coxes for the 2017/18 season. For more information please read the letter below:

Letter to Trialists 2018

Those interested in trialling should sign up using the form below in order to receive further details:

We will be holding an introductory sculling course on the 22nd/23rd April and holding a meeting for all those interested in trialling on the 24th April.

Ely Boathouse Opening

The new Cambridge University Boathouse at Ely was officially opened on Saturday 3rd December by the Vice-Chancellor of Cambridge University,  Professor Sir Leszek Borysiewicz. The boathouse is a fantastic achievement. As Professor Borysiewicz mentioned, it demonstrates what is greatest in a collegiate university like Cambridge: 450 alumni and friends, from 3 clubs, CULRC, CUBC and CUWBC, coming together to ensure we beat Oxford. ely2

This building will be a Centre of Excellence for years to come. With a wetdock, space for boating 3 eights, four bays and extensive interior facilities, the boathouse is a far cry from the al-fresco facilities CULRC previously enjoyed.

A core team of twenty volunteers from the three clubs have worked tirelessly either to raise funds or manage the planning and build projects with the bulk of funds coming from over 450 alumni and friends of the three clubs. The outstanding and iconic design of the building is thanks to Architect, Jerry Bailey. The new boathouse takes the clubs from inadequate facilities to a Centre of Excellence for rowing for Cambridge University and for Ely.

As a symbol of closer cooperation between the University rowing clubs three mixed eights took part in a row past of the new boathouse. Each boat included both openweight and lightweight members of the men’s and women’s current squads.


Races in Mixed Eights

“Today is the culmination of ten years work. Three Clubs, each with different and proud histories coming together in the pursuit of one vision: to put Cambridge at the pinnacle of University Rowing globally – women, men, lightweight, heavyweight combined – and to ensure that each of our scholar-athletes should have the opportunity to fulfil their potential and their dreams. And to beat Oxford.”

Roger Stephens, CUBC Chair


Finishing touches being put on the Boathouse

All photos courtesy of Angus Knights and Naomi Baker

Meet the Squad – Sunday 18th

This Sunday (18th September), we invite alumni to meet the new 2016/17 CULRC Squad. Drinks will be available from 1pm at Pembroke College.

Following the drinks reception, there will be an informal rowers’ triathlon at 2:30pm, to which all are welcome. The likely format is a 6km ergo, 20km bike, 6km run.

Mark Aldred (2008, 2009) to Row in Rio!

We are delighted to be able to share that CULRC oarsman Mark Aldred (2008, 2009) has been selected to represent Team GB at the Rio Olympics.

Mark will be racing in the Lightweight Mens Coxless Four alongside Jono Clegg, Peter Chambers, and Chris Bartley. We wish them the very best in the racing to come.

Mark Aldred (2-seat) training in Varese

Mark Aldred (2-seat) training in Varese

Help fund a CULRC minibus

For several years, CULRC athletes have commuted to Ely for training by train. This was feasible with the location of the existing boathouse, despite a significant financial cost. However, with the construction of the new boathouse at Ely, it will soon become difficult for the club’s athletes to travel by train, with a several-kilometre journey from the station.

To that end, CULRC seeks your help with funding a minibus so that athletes can be driven between Cambridge and Ely.

Please see the link below for more details.

CULRC Win the 2016 Boat Race!

On Saturday 19th March Cambridge beat Oxford at Henley with the verdict ‘easily’ in a time of 6.19. This takes the count to 26 wins out of 42 races to Cambridge

Anyone interested in trialling for the 2017 Race should sign up here:

The full race video can be found here:

The race report for all the days races can be found here:

CULRC 2016 Spares’ Race

2016 Spares Beating Oxfod

At 3pm on Sunday 13th March, the Cambridge University Lightweight Reserve Quad – Heames, Xu, Green and Plummer – raced the Oxford Lightweight Reserves at Henley-on-Thames, a week ahead of the Henley Boat Races. While the spectators were delighted by the crisp spring sunshine, the combination of a strong stream and blustery headwind made for choppy and difficult conditions for the rowers. The race got off to a fast, clean start, with Cambridge on the Berkshire station and Oxford, Buckingham. The crews stayed level until the second minute, where a strong push from Cambridge started to edge them ahead of the dark blues. With both crews now settling into their racing rhythm, the stronger Cambridge boat continued to move away until there was close to two lengths of open water between the two crews coming past the 1000m mark. Here, Oxford renewed their attack and moved back on Cambridge, regaining some lost ground. However, the strength and rhythm of the Cambridge boat, and the lead which they had asserted early on in the race proved too much to overcome, and the Light Blues crossed the finish line ahead by just over 2 lengths. It was an exciting race and a strong win for Cambridge, boding well for the Henley Boat Races.

The Victorious 2016 Spares. From Left: Barney Plummer, James Green, Haofeng Xu, Brennan Heames

The Victorious 2016 Spares. From Left: Barney Plummer (Bow), James Green(2), Haofeng Xu(3), Brennan Heames(Stroke)