Ewart Horsfall

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Ewart Horsfall, circa 1910
Ewart Horsfall, circa 1910
Olympic medal record
Men's rowing
Gold medal – first place 1912 Stockholm Men's eight
Silver medal – second place 1920 Antwerp Men's eight

Ewart Douglas Horsfall DFC, MC (24 May 1892 – 1 February 1974) was a British rower who competed in the 1912 Summer Olympics and in the 1920 Summer Olympics.

Horsfall was born in Liverpool, the son of Howard Douglas Horsfall and was educated at Eton College and Magdalen College, Oxford. He arrived at Oxford with an outstanding reputation as a rower and in 1912 was in the winning Oxford boat in the Boat Race. He joined Leander Club and was a member of the Leander eight which won the gold medal for Great Britain rowing at the 1912 Summer Olympics. At the age of 20, he was the youngest member of the crew.[1]

Horsfall stroked Oxford in the Boat Race in 1913 and became the first stroke to win the Boat Race after being behind at Barnes Railway Bridge. However Oxford lost in 1914, when Horsfall rowed at number four. He won the Grand Challenge Cup at Henley Royal Regatta four times – three times as a stroke – and he twice stroked the winning crew in the Stewards' Challenge Cup at Henley on the two occasions when he competed.

At the outbreak of the First World War, Horsfall joined the Rifle Brigade but later transferred to the Royal Flying Corps;[2] He qualified as a pilot on 31 December 1914,[3] and reached the rank of squadron leader. He achieved a rare double of being awarded the Military Cross in 1916 and the Distinguished Flying Cross in 1918.

After the war, he returned to Oxford to help re-establish rowing at the University. He was strokeman of the Leander eight which won the silver medal for Great Britain rowing at the 1920 Summer Olympics, coming within half a length of winning. In 1947 Horsfall was elected a Steward of Henley Royal Regatta and the following year he was manager of the British Olympic Rowing team.

Horsfall married Myra Downing Fullerton, daughter of Frederick Downing Fullerton in 1923.[4] They had three children, Robin, Geoffrey and Anne.

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