HQ to Publish Biography of Jürgen Gröbler

Next year, HQ will publish a biography of the successful coach Jürgen Gröbler, More Power. The book is written by Olympic medallist Hugh Matheson and rowing historian and writer Christopher Dodd. Photo courtesy of HQ.

5 September 2016

HQ, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers, announced the other day that the publisher have acquired the world rights to the first biography of the most successful rowing coach in Olympic history, the German Jürgen Gröbler, who is now working in Great Britain, coaching the GB Team. At the Olympic Games in Rio, Gröbler’s eight and four took gold.

The book, More Power, is written by Olympic medallist Hugh Matheson and rowing historian and writer Christopher Dodd, who have known Jürgen Gröbler for decades. More Power is the story of the world’s most successful rowing coach whose career has included training winning Olympic rowing crews in both Germany and the UK.

The rights were acquired from Charlie Campbell at Kingsford Campbell by HQ Sales and Marketing Director Nick Bates and HQ Editorial Director Lucy Gilmour.

Nick Bates said:

More Power is as important a commentary on the changes within culture and sport over the last 50 years, as it is a compelling narrative of one of the great names in sport coaching history. From his time in Germany to his arrival in Britain turning British Rowing into our most successful Olympic sport – one name underpins the success of countless rowers and competitive successes and that is Jürgen Gröbler. Hugh and Chris’s backgrounds place them in a unique position to bring Gröbler’s extraordinary story, to life. More Power is instantly essential reading for anyone with an interest in rowing, sporting achievements, or those fascinated by the pursuit of greatness in any field.

In a joint statement Materson and Dodd said:

Jürgen Gröbler, whose career began in the German Democratic Republic and continued in Britain after the unification of the two Germanys, has an unparalleled record of sporting success that ranks him alongside serial winners such as Sir Alex Ferguson and Dave Brailsford. And yet we know very little about the man whose maxim More Power forms the title for this book. With seemingly no extraordinary stylistic or technological genius to make his boats move faster, Gröbler’s success is an incredible feat of will power and determination rolled into meticulous preparation. He has been instrumental in the careers of sporting greats Steve Redgrave, Matthew Pinsent, James Cracknell and trained the British men’s rowing squad going into the Rio Olympics with 14 competitors, twelve of whom won gold in the eight and the four. Gröbler has now coached five successive British fours to gold medals.

Andy Triggs Hodge, who won his third Olympic gold at Rio, said:

We know Jürgen has wanted this for a long time. His whole strategy for the last four years has been building up to this when he prioritized the eight. He knew the talent and depth he had in the team. This is not a flash in the pan idea. It’s a genius at work, and that’s Jürgen Gröbler.

More Power will be published in hardback, eBook and audio book on 15 June 2017, priced at £12.99. 

Hugh Matheson was a British international oarsman through the 1970s, having represented his country at the Olympic Games of Munich 1972, Montreal 1976 (where Gröbler achieved his first gold for the German Democratic Republic) and Moscow 1980. He has remained closely in touch with the sport as a journalist and commentator for The Independent, Eurosport and Regatta magazine.

Chris Dodd has been a rowing correspondent from 1970, first for The Guardian and then for The Independent. Dodd has attended every Olympic regatta since Los Angeles in 1984. He was editor of Regatta magazine between 1987 and 2006 (now Rowing & Regatta) and founding editor of the International Rowing Federation’s World Rowing magazine. He has also written half a dozen rowing histories, including The Story of World Rowing (1992) and Pieces of Eight: Bob Janousek and his Olympians (2012), which covers Matheson’s own Olympic adventures. Dodd is also a contributor to HTBS.

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