Boat Race winner Mouelle 'is the first black athlete to compete'

Boat Race winner Noam Mouelle ‘is the first black athlete to compete in the men’s event in its 194-year history’ after being part of Cambridge’s victory over Oxford

  • Mouelle is believed to have made history as  the first black athlete to compete 
  • Cambridge beat Oxford in the annual boat race after a bright start in the race

Noam Mouelle, a PhD student from France, was part of Cambridge’s winning Boat Race crew and is believed to be the first black competitor of the men’s event.

The event, which has been going on for 194 years, saw Cambridge beat Oxford by one-and-a-third lengths on the Championship Course, with Mouelle playing a key part in the team.

Mouelle studies particle physics at Cambridge, having grown up in Paris, and followed in the footsteps of Daphne Marschenko as she became the first black rower in the women’s boat race back in 2015.

It is believed that Mouelle’is the first black athlete to compete in the men’s event in its 194-year history’, according to The Times.

As part of the Cabridge team, Mouelle helped make it four titles for the men’s team in the last five races as they led from early in the competition.

Noam Mouelle (centre) is believed to be the first black competitor of the University Boat Race

Mouelle was paart of the winning team as a student at Cambridge University in England

However, their celebrations were subdued as Oxford rower Felix Drinkall was exhausted at the end of the race before being rushed to hospital.

Competing at the world rowing junior championships in 2018 and the under-23 championships in 2022, Moulle has an impressive resume in the sport. 

Speaking to the BBC ahead of the race, Mouelle revealed that he wasn’t sure about a future in rowing when he began the sport.

‘Before I started rowing I didn’t have any idea, I remember turning up to the first session and I didn’t know what was going to happen,’ he said.  ‘One of the things I like about rowing is the endurance, you get into a zone where you just focus on one thing and not anything else,’ he explained.

Mouelle has high hopes for the future having won the University Boat Race with Cambridge after years of rowing.

Initially taking up sailing as a child, Mouelle was later introduced to rowing at the age of nine during his time living in Paris before joining Societe Nautique du Perraux just eight miles away from the France capital – and his club watched his race with pride.

‘My rowing club near Paris is getting a big screen so people can watch, especially the kids,’ he continued ‘My parents will be there watching with my friends, if I win it will be very, very special.’ 

With ambitions of competing in the Olympics, next summer could have come at the perfect time for the Frenchman, with the games being held in Paris.

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