Hall of Fame

Daniel Grout

Graduation Year


Induction Year


Hall of Fame

Harvard Athletic Achievements

Grout was a three year letter winner for heavyweight varsity crew and helped the 1985 men’s heavyweight crew team to its induction in the Hall of Fame. This crew achieved a remarkable record, including victories in the Eastern Sprint Championships, the Harvard-Yale Race, the National intercollegiate Championships in Cincinnati and the Grand Challenge Cup at the Henley Royal Regatta in England. No other crew from Harvard or any other university has duplicated this accomplishment. The crew recorded victories over every other major university crew in the United States and England over the course of the season and stamped themselves as one of the outstanding university crews of all time. The crew recorded a decisive victory over Princeton, Brown, Navy and the rest of the eastern universities in the Eastern Sprints Championships. They then switched gears very effectively and rowed to a convincing four length victory over Yale at New London, ending Yale’s four year win streak in the race. Just one week later the crew made the difficult adjustment back to the 2000-meter distance and rowed perhaps their best race of the season. In the finals of the National Intercollegiate Rowing Championships the crew rowed through a greatly improved and determined Princeton crew in the last few strokes of the race. It was both the closest and the fastest race for the Championship. Shortly after winning the National Championships, the crew traveled to Henley, England to compete for the coveted and prestigious Grand Challenge Cup. Olympic and World Championship crews often win the cup and only one US crew had won it in the previous 26 years. Undeterred, the crew entered the event full of confidence and went on to row three outstanding races over the 1984 Danish World Champion Lightweight eight, Cambridge University and, once again, Princeton. No other university crew from the United States or elsewhere has won the event until Harvard did it again in 2003.

Hall of Fame

Remembering Harvard Athletics

Upon learning of this honor several months ago I was struck by the thought, has it really been twenty years? In a way my college days seem so freshly behind, but at some point the particulars of who seat-raced better in headwinds, the locker room jokes, the stroke-by-stroke breakdowns of each race that once seemed so vivid and permanent, many of these seemed to have receded into fond memory. But in thinking ahead to this night, often glancing toward the Henley photo of our ‘85 boat on my bookshelf, the memories began flooding back and have they ever. It has been humbling, and thrilling, to again recall our exceptional year of 1985 and all of my time at Harvard, the intensity of our team’s commitment, our focus, our refusal to lose, and just how fast we could make a boat go.

The highlights are many, but for me our standout moment was just pouring it on at the end to mow down first Washington and then Princeton in the final strokes on Harsha Lake for the 1985 National Championship. It can still make my spine tingle and even wet my eyes to think about.

Since those days I have been deeply grateful for what at the age of nineteen was so much more taken for granted, and with typical hindsight wish only that I was better able to more broadly appreciate the broader values entailed in what we were doing.

I especially thank my wife, Elizabeth, for her love and support in our time together and for our children and family, and who adds to my life every day.

I thank my parents for their love and encouragement and for their sacrifices in giving me such extraordinary privileges and opportunities in my life, and I thank each of my brothers for their love and support.

I thank my high school coach Rich Davis for his example, for losing his temper on my account, more than once, and for teaching me history, and much more.

I thank Ted Washburn for his rhetorical gifts and for conditioning me mentally and physically to excel in this sport.

I thank Harry for his unparalled abilities as a coach and for teaching us to race and to win, and without whom we could not be here. More significantly, I thank Harry for his dedication, for losing his temper on my account, more than once, and for allowing himself to be seen as an example and for caring about the process of our endeavors beyond wins and losses, and much more.

I thank each of my teammates and I am grateful for their friendship and commitment and for working as hard, if not harder, than I did to achieve what we accomplished together.

I thank Harvard and the Friends for their generosity and for the opportunity to compete under the best coaches, with the best equipment, to travel to races in California, Ohio, England, and for the privilege of representing Harvard in sport.

And I thank L. Leventahl for “Speed First - Safety Last”.