Rio target for 28-year-old
By Tony Curtis - Follow me on Twitter: @SkysportsTC. Last Updated: September 5, 2012 10:16am
Tom Aggar is confident he can put his Paralympics disappointment behind him and challenge for the top once again.
The 28-year-old had been the huge favourite for the ASM single sculls gold medal - having gone five years unbeaten, held the world record and won the title in Beijing.
However China's Huang Cheng produced two stunning displays as he first shattered Aggar's world record in the heat by five seconds and then clinched the gold in the final.
Aggar, who suffered a serious spinal injury and paralysis of his legs following a fall during a night out, eventually finished down in fourth place.
"It was a real shock," Aggar admitted to Sky Sports.
"I had been confident of winning but I just wasn't at my best on the day and it is still sinking in.
"I had been training hard for four years so it is disappointing not to have finished with a medal."
"I knew I would have to go out hard from the start and try and take the race away from him but the gamble didn't pay off. I gave it my all but it just wasn't to be."
Tom Aggar Quotes of the week
During an impressive winning run, that saw him claim four World Championship, four World Cup and one Olympic titles, Aggar had built up a reputation for his late surges.
However he claims a change of tactics - in response to Huang's sensational row in the heats - failed to pay dividends.
"I knew I had to change my race plan," said Aggar, speaking on the BMW Group Pavilion.
"The Chinese guy's time in the heat was phenomenal. You don't normally read too much in to other times in the heats as conditions can be different but he had gone more than four seconds quicker than I ever had.
"I knew I would have to go out hard from the start and try and take the race away from him but the gamble didn't pay off. I gave it my all but it just wasn't to be.
"The second half of the race is normally where I can pull away but this guy's second half was just as good, so I had to try something different.
"I am proud of what I have achieved, though, as I gave everything I had. It is not the end of the world. I've had an amazing time and it has been a huge honour to represent my country at a home Games."
Despite his obvious disappointment, Aggar believes he has what it takes to bounce back and reclaim his title at Rio in four years' time - however he first needs some time away.
"I need to reassess things. I feel I still have more to give but I do need a break as maybe I overcooked it a bit," he said.
"If I do compete again it will be for the four years but I want to be competing for the top places.
"My fastest time was two years ago and it was an easy race where I had eased down at the end, so I do think I am capable of clawing back the time.
"I've just got to make sure my preparation is good and that I'm on top form."
Tom Aggar is part of the BMW London 2012 Performance Team. BMW is the Official Automotive Partner of London 2012, for more information visit london2012.bmw.co.uk or visit the BMW Group Pavilion at the Olympic Park #bmwpavilion