Dramatic finish to the season for Collins at Chicago World Championships

Neil Collins
Neil Collins
Scott Campos

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Neil Collins capped off his impressive season with fourth place at the World Triathlon Championships in Chicago.

A bronze medal was agonisingly close for the Great Britain age-group triathlete, from Southsea, in the sprint race.

Neil Collins

Neil Collins

Some confusion with the results saw him originally given fourth, then promoted to third, before Canadian Andrew Taylor was later confirmed in third.

While that was understandably frustrating, Collins was the top GB racer in the 40-44 age group and was delighted to perform so well.

He said: ‘It was such an amazing event with 6,500 of the world’s best triathletes milling around in a great city.

‘The locals were really welcoming and the event organisation was superb (despite the confusion over my final placing).

I was really pleased with my fourth place and top Brit but would obviously have preferred to have been on the podium

Neil Collins

‘I was really pleased with my fourth place and top Brit but would obviously have preferred to have been on the podium.’

Collins finished with a time of 1hr 05min 08sec in over 30 degree heat.

After the swim and bike legs he used his strength on the 5k run with an 18.49 time that saw him improve his position dramatically.

‘Race day was sunny and warm with the temperature on the run course in the low 30s which was favourable for me,’ said Collins.

‘Although I exited the swim mid-pack, I made up a lot of time with a fast bike leg and then ran past most of the remaining competitors to get fourth place and fastest GB athlete in my age group.’

Collins was joined in Chicago by Portsmouth-based Lauren Steadman who won the World Paratriathlon title.

Samantha Rose, from Portsmouth, also did well for GB to pick up an age-group sprint triathlon bronze.

Collins said: ‘As always, the GB team dominated the landscape, turning out over 450 athletes plus family and friends.

‘You could never feel alone competing abroad with that crowd!

‘Samantha did us proud with her bronze and Lauren continued to dominate her category with another gold.’

Collins, who is a David Lloyd Port Solent Tri Club member, has qualified for the 2016 European Championships and the 2016 World Championships in Mexico.

He will start his season with an appearance on home ground in Rob Piggott’s Portsmouth Duathlon Series in March.