Johannesburg - World champ Hank McGregor will be chasing a fourth title when he lines up in next month's N3TC Drak Challenge canoe marathon in Underberg, KwaZulu-Natal.
He won his other three titles consecutively between 2010 and 2012.
Earlier this year, Andy Birkett exploited a mistake by McGregor in the closing stages of the race to win his maiden title on a low uMzimkulu River.
McGregor said he was eager to erase the memory of letting the title slip through his fingers.
"I knew that I had to get into Mkhulu Rapid first and I managed to outsprint Andy into Mkhulu. I made a mistake, deflected off a rock and was stranded high and dry like a beached whale and could only watch as Andy got through and paddled away," McGregor said.
"I hate losing, period, but when I lose through a mistake that I have made then it becomes even more of a bitter pill to swallow.
"Hats off to Andy. He took his chances well and it worked out well for him."
McGregor missed the 2013 Drak Challenge because it conflicted with the Perth Doctor Surfski race in Australia, and Grant van der Walt capitalised on a flooded river to add his name to the list of Drak winners.