UPTON Rowing Club have placed their full support behind ex-member Zac Purchase as he bids for Olympic gold on Monday.

Zac and his rowing partner Mark Hunter are hot favourites to win a gold medal in the men’s lightweight double sculls in Beijing.

They have been tipped by former Olympic rower Steve Redgrave as Britain’s best hope for rowing gold.

The 22-year-old took his first steps towards Olympic glory when he trained at Upton Rowing Club in the mid 1990s.

Angus McCleod, Upton club chairman, said: “He is a fabulous talent.

“We have a vibrant junior section at the club at the moment. “As a club we get together and watch the events on a big screen in somebody’s house so we will watch Zac.

“We’re right behind him at the Olympics. Zac’s an inspiration to us all.”

The pair have already had world gold cup medal wins this year at Munich, Lucerne and Poznan.

Zac holds the world single lightweight sculls record but he feels that being the number one team means that the others will all be out to beat them.

He will be in action on Monday morning from 8.30am British time.

Throughout the Beijing Games, Malvern mountain biker Liam Killeen will be offering his take on his experiences in China in his exclusive Gazette blog.

Upton vet Graham Potts will also give his take on events as he looks after the horses on the Australian equestrian team.