Skip To Main Content

1965 Henley Crew

65' Henley
1965 Henley Crew
Winner of the Princess Elizabeth Challenge Cup: Henley Royal Regatta
Set a new course record of 6:44 minutes, which stood for 12 years.

The 1965 Crew win at Henley was an amazing feat for Tabor Academy. Through hard work, desire, team spirit and innovative coaching, this group of young men proved to be an extraordinary team. In the semi-final race, the Tabor crew executed their game plan against England's undefeated Emanuel School by coming from behind in the final 100 yards to win and set a course record of 6:44 minutes. Tabor rowed a similar race in the finals beating Phillips Andover Academy, as well as equaling their record time of 6:44 to win the Cup and securing the spot as the only US team to win at Henley that year. At the Henley Royal Regatta prize ceremony, Prime Minister Sir Robert Menzies of Australia presented the Tabor crew with the Princess Elizabeth trophy and individual medals, pronouncing them the World Schoolboy Rowing Champions for 1965.

Tabor's crew coach, Harry Hoyle, who taught German at Tabor, was often in touch with Karl Adams, the coach of Germany's Ratzeburg crew. Coach Adams' crews were dominating international rowing through new rowing techniques he developed. As a result of their conversations, three weeks prior to the Henley Regatta, Coach Hoyle changed the team's stroke style to what the Ratzeburg crew was using; a shorter, higher stroke rate with a pause at the finish of the stroke. This change allowed the team to be more efficient and to sprint at a much higher rate at the finish. The boys in the boat were very close, trained hard, had a great deal of trust in each other and the will to win. This combination allowed them to learn a new technique in a very short time period, enabling them to row at a higher rate than the traditional crews and accomplish a record setting win.

Team Roster:

Bow: Rodney Reames '65; 2: Ladd Hey '65; 3: Johnathan Stevens '65; 4: Christopher Parke '66; 5: Walter Poor IV '66; 6: John Clark '65; 7: Robert Stevenson '65; Stroke: Robert Cunningham '65, Captain; Cox: Robert Silbulkin '65; Rigger: William Beyer '65; Alternate: Robinson Billings '65

Coach: Harry Hoyle