London’s cutest event: 2014 Oxford & Cambridge Goat Race at Spitalfields City Farm

Spitalfields City Farm Goat Race Today

The Goat Race at Spitalfields City Farm near Brick Lane has to be London’s most anticipated annual animal event. Tickets sell out almost instantly for punters to place their bets on who will take the racing crown: Oxford or Cambridge?


They’ve been training for months, all in anticipation for today. Maybe they’ve never stopped training, not since the big race last year. Who knows how many pounds of food they’ve been shovelling into their mouths to keep their energy up, their blood pumping, their stomachs that … round.

London athletic-types were buzzing today as they lined the River Thames, anticipating the start of the 160th annual boat race between two of the best-known universities in the world: Oxford and Cambridge.

The rest of us headed east to a slice of countryside in the shadow of the City to the sixth annual Goat Race at Spitalfields City Farm between two of the best-known goats in this part of the world, wearing the Oxford and Cambridge insignias draped across their backs.

And joining the pack this year was a third goat, called And.

30: Get to know London’s city farms at Spitalfields City Farm.

Spitalfields City Farm Goat Race Oxford Cambridge

Spitalfields City Farm Goat Race Oxford

I visited the bookie and put my bet on Oxford.

Spitalfields City Farm Goat Race Betting Bookie

And now a word from our sponsors.

Spitalfields City Farm Goat Race Sponsors

In my usual fashion of arriving somewhere far too early, we had time to poke around the farm, set in a patch of green not far from bustling Brick Lane, carrying the usual laid-back East London vibe.

Spitalfields City Farm Goat Race Gay

After grabbing some lunch on the grounds, we roamed around and saw the rest of the herd: pigs, ducks, geese, cows and of course the cat guarding the hen house.

Spitalfields City Farm Cat Hen House

Proving just how much we had learned in art class at school, we designed a couple of trophies for the winning goat from some tasty snacks.

Spitalfields City Farm Chard Goat Race

Spitalfields City Farm Goat Race Trophy

Spitalfields City Farm Goat Race Trophy

And then it was race time.

Oxford got an early start, and I figured the race was all mine.

Spitalfields City Farm Goat Race Oxford Cambridge

Spitalfields City Farm Goat Race Oxford Cambridge

Spitalfields City Farm Goat Race Oxford

But soon enough that pesky And was catching up.

Spitalfields City Farm Goat Race Oxford And Cambridge

Cambridge, who had won the last five years running, was nowhere in sight.

In the end, And took it all. Oxford came in second.

Should have bet on the boat race instead.

Spitalfields City Farm

Visit: Spitalfields City Farm, Buxton St. London E1 5AR. Overground Shoreditch High Street. Goat race tickets £10.

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