American-born Rowley Douglas was the coxswain for the British eight at the Sydney Olympics and guided his crew to a first British victory in the event since Stockholm in 1912. He coxed a variety of national team boats before taking the position with the eight at the start of 1999. Douglas’ first year with the crew ended in with a silver medal at the World Championship and when they won two rounds of the Rowing World Cup in 2000 they began to be ranked amongst the favourites for the Olympic championship. The Olympic final at Sydney was a fairly straightforward victory for the British as they took an early lead and were only challenged towards the very end of the race. His last major championship appearance was in 2001 and he later worked for the financial services arm of General Electric. In 2010 he announced that he was available for selection for the 2012 Games and was chosen as one of the prospective coxswains for the Olympic eight.