Collins thrives on life back in fast lane
Daily Yomiuri Sportswriter
(May. 9, 2012)
Not surprising for a former world champion in the 100 meters, Kim Collins never could get used to life in the slow lane.
Having retired in 2009 after an international athletics career that spanned 17 years, Collins returned to the sport the following year for the simplest of reasons--he was bored.
"There is nothing to do," the 36-year-old Collins said. "I really wanted to be home and be closer to my kids. I did that, but when they are in school during the day, there's pretty much nothing to do. Sports keeps me busy."
Collins, speaking after finishing third in the 100 at Sunday's Seiko Golden Grand Prix in Kawasaki, said that his passion for athletics remains as strong as ever and provides the motivation to remain competitive.
"I love this sport," said the father of six, whose ages range from 4 months to 14. "I've been doing it most of my life, so it comes easy. But as you get older, it gets a little bit more tricky getting into that peak shape."
Collins, who put the small Caribbean nation of St. Kitts & Nevis on the sporting map when he won the gold medal at the 2003 world championships in Paris, got more than his second wind in his second life on the track.
At last summer's world championships, Collins defied the odds and made history in Daegu, South Korea.
While the stadium was still buzzing over the disqualification of Usain Bolt in the 100 final, Collins glided to third place, making him the oldest world medalist in the event's history.
The winds of fortune blew Collins' way again in the 4x100 relay, when St. Kitts & Nevis, in its first-ever final, came away with the bronze medal after the powerful U.S. and British teams got tangled up and failed to finish.
Ironically, American Darvis Patton, who was knocked off course by Britain's Harry Aikines-Aryeetey, was a teammate of Collins' at Texas Christian University, where they won an NCAA relay title.
In Sunday's race, Collins started fast but was passed by China's Asian champion Su Bingtian and 2009 U.S. champion Mike Rodgers. Collins clocked 10.07, just .03 behind Su and .02 behind Rodgers.
"I don't know what happened today, but...It just didn't come together," Collins said. "I feel good, I feel it could have been a better race. Sometimes, you also can underestimate your opponents. That also happens. It just wasn't my day. But I have to bounce back."
Collins said he feels stronger at this stage of his preparations compared with last year, which bodes well for his chances of pulling another surprise at the London Olympics.
"My goal is to make it to the final," he said. "As in Daegu, I will take it one round at a time."