This is the story of the Navy eight and their coach, Dick Glendon, who arrived at the Naval Academy in 1904, with the mission to remake the Navy crew into a national and international powerhouse. In doing so, Glendon revolutionized the sport. Upon his arrival at the Naval Academy, Glendon emphasized physical training on shore, acquiring American-made boats, and started looking for the perfect crew. Glendon was an innovator. He designed a shell with a flatter hull to make the shells ride higher on the water and developed a regimen of off-water drills and conditioning exercises, all the while focusing on developing a uniquely American style of rowing.
Prior to his arrival at the Naval Academy, American intercollegiate rowing was, to a great extent, dominated by the crews fielded by the Ivy League. Gordon's mission was to break the Ivy League monopoly, and by 1920 had done just that, culminating in the role of the consummate underdog as it rowed against Great Britain for Olympic gold. Underlying Gordon's quest for naval superiority, both literally and figuratively, was the chance to row against the world's standard - the Leander Boat Club, fielding a crew from the Royal Navy. The Naval Academy, represented the United States at the 1920 Olympic games, defeating Great Britain and the Royal Navy in winning the gold medal.
We have acquired several new copies of The Wonder Crew, and very lucky to also acquire a signed first edition! They are now available on the Rower's Bookshelf.