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Master of the Goldmine Jürgen Grobler

11:33 am, Saturday 13 August 2016, on the banks of the Lagoa Rodrigo de Freitas, a man aged 70 years and two weeks had tears in his eyes.

Jürgen Grobler, normally relaxed and beaming, was speechless, a rush of emotion briefly overriding his genial imperturbability. His boys had just won gold again: the best late birthday present ever.

Seconds earlier, Britain's men's eight had cruised over the finish line, winning the biggest rowing prize at the Olympics, a day after their colleagues had bossed the coxless fours for the fifth games in a row. Grobler, forty years after winning his first Olympic gold as a coach, had just realised his ambition of the last four years and a lifetime of coaching – not only winning the blue-riband event, the speediest and most sensational race at the regatta, but personally coaching two big-boat crews to gold, which no one had yet managed in the post-Communist era. The tears didn't last long; within minutes viewers saw him on the BBC grinning with delight, hugging rower after rower with pride.

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About Row360

Welcome to Row360, the world’s only global, independent rowing magazine. Row360 brings you features from around the world, profiling the best athletes, coaches, and others from the whole rowing community – Olympic, Paralympic, college, club, ocean, and more.