Djibo Issaka, who has been fondly dubbed the "sloth sculler", has completed his last race at Dorney Lake, Eton, finishing a painful last but winning the hearts of the crowds.
The athlete, from Niger, only started rowing three months before the London Games, and learnt in a rowing boat.
The 35-year-old took to the water for the last time on Friday - after losing both his heats and repechage by embarrassingly large margins. But Issaka's determination to finish the race won over the audience at Dorney, and the rower received a "huge roar" after his race.
"I have no technique, I have only strength" he admitted after his repechage, where he trailed 300m behind his nearest competitor.
Six months ago Issaka was a gardener - now, he's fast becoming one of the most recognisable names in the sport - despite coming 33rd place in the single sculling.
But the new "Eric the eel" has attracted criticism from one of the world's greatest rowers, Sir Steve Redgrave. After Saturday's single scull heat, the five-times Olympic champion, questioned whether the amateur rower should have been allowed to race.
"You've got to be encouraging more countries to get involved but there are better scullers from different countries who are not allowed to compete because of the different countries you've got."
But rowing governing body FISA rapped Redgrave, saying Issaka had received a wild card entry - which are issued to ensure all 204 National Olympic Committees can take part, even if no athletes from those countries have qualified.
Issaka himself hopes his appearance will inspire his land-locked home country to take up the sport.
"There are many people who want to start rowing because I have come to the Olympic Games," he said. "We will start when I get back. We just have to wait for the boats to arrive."