A GROWING INFLUENCE
The biggest breakthrough for the machine in these early years came from its adoption and use by the 1984 Grand Slam Wallabies. After a very successful campaign, the Australian coach Alan Jones called the machine ‘the finest forward coaching aid ever devised’.
Following the performance of the 1984 Wallabies in utilising the Powerhouse to achieve unexpected dominance in the scrum during their Grand Slam tour, including their historic pushover try against Wales at the Arms Park, interest and orders for the machine began to pour in from all around the world and a new distributor was secured in Japan. By 1987 Rhino had began its Official Supplier status with England.
In 1988 Reg Clark, who had first contacted Tim Francis about the Powerhouse whilst playing rugby in Japan in the early 1980’s, teamed up with the legendary Andy Ripley - Rosslyn Park, England and Lions No 8 - whilst both of them were working in the City, to incorporate Rhino and effect a Business Expansion Scheme share issue. Ripley became Rhino Chairman for the next 18 years. At the 2003 Rugby World Cup, the Powerhouse machine followed England around Australia and with Phil Keith-Roach as scrum coach in
the words of one commentator, “the England scrum didn’t take a backward step throughout
the whole tournament”. In 2006 on Derek de Glanville’s retirement, Clark teamed up with England Rugby World Cup winning captain Martin Johnson to effect a Management Buy In of the business.