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The boat race 2009

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Boat race

You know it must be spring when the Oxford and Cambridge Boat Race comes round again.

The annual Thames river battle takes place on Sunday March 29 this year, and is expected to draw up to 250,000 spectators and millions of television viewers globally.

The first Oxford and Cambridge boat race took place in March 1829, the idea of two friends: Charles Merivale, a Cambridge student, and his old schoolfriend and Oxford student, Charles Wordsworth. Oxford won the inaugural event.

Based in Westminster in London for many years, the race moved six miles up the river in 1845 to Putney, then a country village with more space for the crowds. Since 1856 the race has been an annual event, apart from the war years.

Cambridge are the current leaders of the series, with 79 victories to Oxford's 74. Oxford won the boat race in 2008.

You could join the crowds on the banks of the Thames to witness all the rowing action and make a weekend of it. With a Holiday Extras Theatre Break, you get a top-priced ticket for a West End show plus a night at a central London hotel, all at a fantastic price.

There's also the option to add a pre-theatre meal and London attraction to your weekend package. Don't forget to book in advance to get the best price for your London Theatre Break.

Remember, the 2009 boat race takes place on Sunday March 29 at 3.40pm.