Tom James MBE took a year out from rowing after winning men’s four gold at Beijing 2008, undertaking a variety of charity and coaching activities and running the London Marathon.
He returned to the squad in 2010 but sustained an injury which sidelined him until last year, where he was part of the World Championship winning men’s four in Bled.
He raced four times in the University Boat Race – in 2003, 2005, 2006 and 2007 but it wasn’t until his final year, when he was president of the Cambridge University crew, that he tasted victory.
He is a patron of two charities – WVP Kenya, which brings education and support to children, and the Movement Centre, which helps disabled children with movement difficulties. He shares the same birthday as men’s four teammate Alex Gregory and made his Olympic debut at Athens 2004.
At the 2012 Olympics in London, James won gold in the men's four with partners Alex Gregory, Pete Reed and Andrew Triggs Hodge.
Double Olympic champion James announces retirement
Rower Reed got engaged at Games close
Rowing blazed a trail for Great Britain team