Yale's heavyweight crew team has defeated Harvard in their 150th regatta, the nation's oldest collegiate sporting event.

Yale finished almost 17 seconds ahead in the annual 4-mile race Sunday along Connecticut's Thames River. Yale coxswain Chris Carothers told The Boston Globe: "It's a huge statement for our program."

The Bulldogs' time was 18 minutes, 35.8 seconds. Harvard's was 18 minutes, 52.6 seconds. Yale beat Harvard's 1995 upstream course record of 18:41.

Yale last won in 2007. Harvard has won 95 of the previous 149, including seven in a row and 14 of the last 15.

Harvard won by more than 23 seconds in 2013. Last year, Yale cut that to 14 seconds.

The first race was in 1852. It has been held regularly since 1878, interrupted during the Civil War, World War I and World War II.