To mark a new era of sporting equality, Newton Investment Management, the sponsor of The Newton Women’s Boat Race, today presented the Oxford and Cambridge University Women’s Boat Clubs with a new trophy, designed by Rod Kelly MA RCA, one of the UK’s leading silversmiths.
Since leaving the Royal College of Art in 1983 where he gained a Masters’ Degree, Rod has worked on many prestigious projects which can be seen in locations including The V&A Museum, No. 10 Downing Street, The Royal Mint, St Paul’s Cathedral and several royal households. He has also designed coins for the Royal Mint, along with a first class stamp for the Royal Mail.
The trophy is four sided and handmade in silver, each side the shape of a blade’s spoon with chased embossed patterns of flowing water. Imposed on each spoon is the bow of a boat cutting through the water. The main body is supported by four ebony columns representing the looms of four blades. Several of the chased details on the trophy are inlaid with pure gold. The base has four sides. Two of the sides represent the Clubs with symbolism chosen by themselves, a lion for Cambridge and a crown for Oxford; while the other two sides are chased with apples balanced on a scale, these are representative of the sponsor’s involvement and their belief in balance, equality and diversity in sport. On the underside there is a silver plate with records of all previous winners dating back to 1927, and from this year the new winners will be engraved visibly on the top of the trophy. The trophy weighs 5.5kgs and measures 50cms high.
The design process has been an 18-month collaborative exercise between Newton, the Clubs and Rod Kelly with each Club having an equal vote in the development of each aspect.
Speaking about the new trophy, Helena Morrissey, CEO of Newton Investment Management commented:-
“This magnificent trophy means that there is now a prize that truly reflects all of the commitment made by the scholar athletes to their sport and is another step towards parity between the men’s and women’s Boat Races. We are delighted to have been able to facilitate the development of such a key piece of art and to be able to contribute so fully to the longevity of the Race.”
With the support of Newton Investment Management since 2011, both Women’s Clubs have been able to invest in coaching and equipment to prepare them for 2015 when The Newton Women’s Boat Race will take place in London on the same course as the Men’s Race. The new trophy will be presented to the winning crew of The 2014 Newton Women’s Boat Race in Henley as a symbolic link between the two Race locations.
The Newton Women’s Boat Race takes place on 30th March, in Henley where the new trophy will be presented for the first time by Olympic gold medallist Sophie Hosking. The BNY Mellon Boat Race follows a week later on 6th April 2014 in Putney.