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GERMAN HORSE– POWER

The ‘Deutschland-Achter’
PHOTOGRAPHY YANNICK SCHURWANZ
The German eight are outfitted by German clothing brand New Wave

Powerful, fast and loud; the big boat, in Germany, is king. So much so that the national team heavyweight men’s eight has become a household name. Rowers come and go, but mention the Deutschland-Achter to the average, non-rowing German on the street and they will know what you are talking about. The eight reigns supreme.

It’s a tradition that can be traced back to the early 1960s and the era of Ratzeburg coach Karl Adam. Adam lead the German men’s eight to its first Olympic gold medal in Rome in 1960, followed by silver in Tokyo ’64 and gold again in Mexico City four years later. The Deutschland-Achter – a term coined by Adam himself – has remained a proud tradition in Germany ever since. After that initial ‘golden age’, mixed fortunes followed, but since 2009, a new age of German domination, echoing that of the Adam era, has emerged.

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