Disturbance vocabulary: Boat Race interrupted

Vocabulary about disturbances/interruptions is highlighted in bold. There is a glossary below to help you understand.

One of England’s most famous sporting events was punctuated with controversy at the weekend after a protestor interrupted proceedings. The Boat Race between Oxford and Cambridge Universities (which has been running since 1829) had to be temporarily drawn to a halt after Trenton Oldfield, an anti-elitism campaigner jumped into The River Thames, swam towards the boats to cause an obstruction and thereby  impeded their progress. Everything was thrown into disarray as the race referee ordered the boats to stop for safety reasons. Later he said: “I was totally focused on the boat crews. The assistant referee saw something in the water and was shouting, ‘up ahead, up ahead’. I didn’t realise it was somebody swimming. He swam right into the path of the boats, so we had to stop.”  There was a 30-minute hiatus as confusion reigned while the officials pulled the demonstrator dressed in a wetsuit out of the water. The police later confirmed that he had been arrested on a public order offence and was being held in custody in a west London police station. Eventually, the race was restarted, but there was even more chaos to come: the boats raced too close to each other, they crashed and one of the Oxford team’s oars snapped in half.  This time the referee didn’t feel that there was any need to intervene again, as the problem had been caused by Oxford going off their racing line. This decision severely hampered Oxford’s chances and effectively the race was over from this point onwards. Cambridge went on to win by 4 boat lengths, when sometimes in the past the winning margin at the finishing line has only been a few inches. The Oxford crew complained that there had been no second stoppage after the crash, but the win was given to Cambridge after an appeal was turned down. Normally, the Boat Race victorious crew is ecstatic and there are jubilant scenes from supporters. However, the 2012 Boat Race will also be remembered for yet another disruption. One of the Oxford crew collapsed in the boat at the finish and there were worrying scenes as he was dragged into a rescue boat and rushed off to hospital. This meant that the victory ceremony was cancelled and all celebrations were put on hold to bring to a close the very unusual proceedings. You can see all of the incidents in this video

Disturbance Vocabulary

to punctuate with
sth happens at different points throughout an event
to interrupt proceedings
to stop the progress of an event
to draw to a halt
to stop the progress of an event
to cause an obstruction
to stop the progress of an event with sth
to impede sb progress
to stop the progress of sb activity
to be thrown into disarray
chaos after an unusual event
a pause in an event
confusion reigned
chaos after an unusual event
to intervene
to stop the progress of an event
to hamper
to damage the progress of sth
a moment when an avtivity is stopped
problem that stops an event
to cancel
to stop a planned event from happening
to put on hold
to say that a planned event will take place on a later date
to bring to a close
to finish (usually sth that has taken a long time)

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