STEVE YATES ended his truncated season with a fine win in the Cotswold Classic Middle Distance Triathlon.

Yates, from Daglingworth, was runner-up in the 2012 World Long Course Triathlon Championships (45y to 49y) but had a serious bike accident which resulted in a broken collar bone last year.

Steve opted to miss out on international competitions in 2014 while he eased his way back to full health and fitness.

The Cotswold Classic win capped a fine comeback season which has seen him gain runner-up slots in two other races and three age-group wins along with victory in the season-long Ray Rhymes 10-mile time trial series run by the Corinium Cycling Club.

In the Cotswold Classic Yates completed the 1.9km swim, 90km bike and 21km run in a time of 4hr 01min 18sec to lead home the 506 finishers.

"Luckily the weather conditions turned out to be ideal on the day despite the 6.30am cold lake swim start," said Yates, who is sponsored by Ride 24/7 of Cirencester.

"It also took a few minutes on the bike to get warmed up. But there was very little wind and the sun came out at about 9am by which time we'd completed the two-lap bike section and were starting the three-lap run section.

"I was happy to have exited the water in sixth place and I began to chase down the leaders on the 90km bike course, coming to the transition in second place overall.

"I actually took the race lead during the transition and managed to extend it during the 21km run to finish more than six minutes ahead of the second-placed finisher."

Steve's individual splits were: 1.9km swim – 27min 33sec; 90km bike – 2hr 09min; 21km run – 1hr 23min.

The weekend win has secured him a place for Team GB at next year's World Long Distance Triathlon Championships in Sweden.