Olympic champion George Nash has announced his retirement from rowing after making history as part of the coxless four crew at Rio 2016.
Nash rowed to Olympic bronze at London 2012, partnering Will Satch, before forming part of the four that made it a fifth successive gold medal in the event for a Team GB crew in Rio.
The 27-year-old was joined by Alex Gregory, Constantine Louloudis and Mo Sbihi in the boat as they put in a sterling row to dominate the Australians and claim a memorable gold in the shadow of Sugarloaf Mountain.
But after the efforts of the last eight years, Nash has decided to hang up his oar and, despite the gruelling training schedules and lung-busting ergo sessions, he admitted he will miss the pain.
“As part of the GB Rowing Team I've worked with the most dedicated, driven and dogged athletes, coaches and support staff in the world. I'll miss that,” he said.
“I'll miss exploring the limits of fatigue and laughing about it with the lads. I'll miss lining up next to the best rowers in the world and sharing that infectious, nervous energy on the start line.
“And of course I'll miss all those times I got to cross the finish line first.”
Nash, from Guildford, studied engineering at Cambridge University, where he was a member of the boat club and took part in two Boat Races, winning in 2010 but losing in 2011.
After returning to university following a year out to focus on preparations for London 2012, Nash was elected president of the boat club and again rowed in the Blue Boat as they lost out to Oxford in 2013.
He now rows for Molesey Boat Club and retires with three World Championship titles and two European goldsto his name, in addition to his Olympic medals.
And after such a distinguished career, the oarsman was grateful for the opportunities offered to him during his time on the water.
"Rowing has given me an opportunity to pursue excellence,” he added. “An opportunity that not many people ever get the chance to look in the eye and stare down.
“An opportunity to take the hard road.”