Olympic champion Purchase calls time on rowing career

03 February 2014 / 10:10

Former Olympic champion Zac Purchase has called time on his rowing career, but insists he is not ruling out any future sporting challenges.

Purchase and Mark Hunter won lightweight double sculls gold at the Beijing Games in 2008 before claiming silver in London four years later.

The duo were also world champions in 2010 and 2011 while Purchase won a lightweight men’s single World Championships title in 2006 – a year after taking the World Under-23 title in the same event.

And while Purchase intends to keep up his fitness levels, at 27 he believes it is time to retire from the sport of rowing.

Purchase said: “I have been part of the GB Rowing team for nearly a decade and during that time have shared a tremendously successful period with some of the world’s finest athletes.

“Winning the gold medal with Mark [Hunter] at the Beijing Games in 2008 is as memorable today as it was those six years ago.

"To then have the chance to compete on home water in London and to win silver in front of a rapturous home crowd was an honour and something I will never forget.

"Since London, I have spent time reflecting on those results and I felt it was the right time to step away from rowing to explore other opportunities. I plan to keep fit just in case a sporting challenge presents itself. 

“Rowing has played a significant part in my life, and was how I met my wife. I am indebted to everyone who has supported my career as a lightweight athlete over the years, particularly Fliss, my wife and my parents. I wish the British Team well in their build up to the Rio Olympics and beyond.”

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