An annual rowing contest between Oxford and Cambridge universities sponsored by Newton Investment Management reached a turning point for gender equality.
Earlier this month, organizers of the Newton Women's Boat Race announced it will be held on the same stretch of the Thames River — and on the same day — as the men's race by 2015, said Helena Morrissey, CEO of Newton Investment Management, London. “This is a dream come true,” she added.
The men's rowing event, known simply as The Boat Race, is one of the oldest sporting events — and rivalries — in the world, dating to 1829. The first women's boat race was in 1927.
“The Boat Race is such an iconic event for the men, but for the women, it was completely different,” said Ms. Morrissey, who was a cox when she attended Cambridge as an undergraduate.
“They had no training facility and didn't have financing at all” when Newton first agreed to sponsor the women's race in 2010, Ms. Morrissey said. “The more I learned about what was going on, the more passionate I became about equality.”
In February, Newton also announced a new sponsorship agreement for the women's race while Newton's parent, The Bank of New York Mellon Corp., agreed to sponsor the men's event, which will be renamed The BNY Mellon Boat Race next year.