James Cracknell, 46, became the oldest competitor in the historic Oxford v Cambridge Boat Race yesterday.
And his soon-to-be ex wife, Beverley Turner, revealed she watched him become victorious with Cambridge in the University race at home with their three children, Croyde, 15, Kiki, 10, and Trixie, eight.
It comes one week after the couple announced they had split, following 17 years of marriage.
Speaking about James’ commitment to the team, Beverley claimed his family responsibilities took a back seat when he returned to Cambridge to study and race.
Writing in The Times, she said: “This endeavour had taken their daddy away from home for eight solid months. The kids needed to see that this enormous family sacrifice wasn’t entirely in vain.”
She continued: “James has spoken publicly about this latest feat, demonstrating to his children that you can do anything you set your mind to.
“He won’t mind me admitting that I consider that to be b******s — I wouldn’t want my children to view such an exit from familial responsibilities as something to aspire to.”
Beverley nursed James back to health after his devastating brain injury in 2010, where the double Olympic rower was struck off his bike by a truck in Arizona, United States.
The mother-of-three spoke about the strain James’ injury had on their relationship.
Beverley said doctors warned her his personality might be on “Planet James for a while”.
She said: “They basically made it sound as if I would be married to a drunk teenager. And they were right.”
Beverley wrote in the publication she had been “missing” her husband for the past eight years.
Last year, James enrolled in a MPhil in human evaluation at Cambridge and moved away from home to focus on his Masters degree.
James and Beverley announced their split in a statement at the end of March.
It said: “We can confirm that sadly we separated last year.
“Together, we remain committed to our amazing children, they are our absolute priority and wish people to be kind and mindful of this.”
Beverley shared a Twitter post following the Boat Race yesterday to show her support for her estranged husband, whom she remains close to.
Praising James, she said: “Fantastic performance from @jamescracknell and @CUBCsquad.
“Congratulations on hard won victory. Having been quiet for the last few weeks, I’ve written ONE piece which you can read in tomorrow’s @thetimes. “
Beverley added: “Behind every great man an’ all that…”