Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 2 August 2014

Billy on the Box: A big shout for Louloudis

There’s only one Constantine Louloudis. Oh yes, across the length and breadth of these sceptered isles, school corridors reverberated to such chants on Monday morning as Boat Race fever swept the land.

Makes a nice change from cholera and typhoid, as the BBC’s history department was out in force to take us through the ‘most historic race on water’ according to Claire Balding, including a rundown on how rubbish the sewers are in London.

So it turns out it’s not just Blues bobbing up and down the Thames, there are a few browns too, but the toffs of Oxford and Cambridge were out in force as somehow their teams got to the final again.

Apparently the Boys’ Model and St Mary’s were excluded after a coming together in the early stages and the Ark Royal had to be called to sort things out.

They would have needed such a vessel to carry all the guests that Claire spoke to in the unfeasibly long build-up to an event that lasts less than 20 minutes and while her shoreplay was quite entertaining, the climax was a bit of a damp squib, or squid if one could survive in that water.

The toffs were looking for a perch (no chance in those murky depths), while one competitor from Down Under ‘fights crocodiles in his spare time.’ Strewth, I bet he drinks Pimms.

But it was Constantine, or Stan as he’s known, who won the laurels as his Oxford crew romped to victory, watched, Andrew Cotter told us, on the BBC News World Service. I’m sure they were dancing all night on the streets of La Paz.

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