Monthly Archives: November 2013

Sports Personality 2013: The contenders

Ten contenders stand a chance of winning the 60th BBC Sports Personality of the Year award.

The shortlist was announced on Tuesday, with the 2013 award voted for by the public on the night of Sunday 15 December.

Here’s a look at the contenders looking to follow cyclist Sir Bradley Wiggins, who

collected the coveted award in 2012.

Sir Ben Ainslie




Sir Ben Ainslie

The most decorated sailor in Olympic history fulfilled a childhood dream in 2013 as part of a winning America’s Cup team.

He was drafted in as tactician and

helped mastermind an unlikely victory for Oracle Team USA

as they fought back from 8-1 down to beat Team New Zealand 9-8.

Ainslie, who was knighted in the Queen’s New Year Honours, is the first Briton in 110 years to be on board a winning America’s Cup boat.

What he said:

“I did try to be super-positive but I’m not stupid enough to think I could do it on my own.”

Ian Bell




Ian Bell

Batsman Bell was named man-of-the-series after the summer Ashes showdown in which he was a key figure in England’s 3-0 defeat of Australia.

His tally of 562 at an average of 62 from the middle order equalled the English record for the

most runs scored in a five-match home Ashes,

set by Denis Compton back in 1948.

The Warwickshire right-hander also became only the fifth Englishman to score three consecutive centuries in Ashes Tests.

What he said:

“I haven’t thought about the personal achievements. It’s just nice to contribute.”

Hannah Cockroft




Hannah Cockroft

Paralympic gold medallist Cockroft followed up her success at London 2012 with the

sprint double at the IPC World Athletics Championships

in Lyon.

She won the T34 100m and 200m titles and set a new championship record of 17.88 seconds in the T34 100m.

The ‘Hurricane’ also won the T33/T34 100m race at the Anniversary Games in London, setting a new stadium record.

What she said:

“Everyone is expecting me to go out and win each time, and that is a challenge, but I want to win every race that I can enter.”

Mo Farah




Mo Farah

Farah became only the second man in history to complete an

Olympic and world ‘double-double’

in the distance running events.

He followed the great Ethiopian Kenenisa Bekele by managing the feat in the 5,000m and 10,000m events at the World Athletics Championships.

Earlier in the year, he also broke Steve Cram’s 28-year-old British record in the 1500m.

What he said:

“I never thought in my career that I’d be able to achieve something like this, anything is possible I guess.”

Chris Froome




Chris Froome

Chris Froome made it

back-to-back British victories at the Tour de France

with a stunning win in the 100th edition of the race.

Emulating the achievement of compatriot Sir Bradley Wiggins, he took the title by over four minutes and wore the yellow jersey from stage eight onwards.

He won three stages along the way on the gruelling 3,404km course.

What he said:

“It would be easy for someone to say it’s not worth giving up all that you have for one bike race in France – but it was so worth it.”

Leigh Halfpenny



Rugby union

Leigh Halfpenny

The Cardiff Blues full-back has

starred for Wales and the British and Irish Lions

during 2013.

He was named man-of-the-series in the victorious Lions tour of Australia, where his 21 points in the deciding third Test win was an individual record, and helped him overhaul the series record previously held by his kicking coach Neil Jenkins.

Before that, Halfpenny picked up the player of the tournament award in the Six Nations as his 74 points helped Wales retain the title.

What he said:

“I’ve worked harder and harder in training and it all paid off.”

AP McCoy



Horse racing

AP McCoy

McCoy became the

first jump jockey to ride 4,000 winners

when he triumphed on Mountain Tunes at Towcester in November.

The Northern Irishman’s landmark is almost 1,500 more than the next most successful rider, Richard Johnson.

McCoy, voted Sports Personality in 2010, won an unprecedented 18th consecutive champion jump jockey title and is on course for a 19th just months after a fall left him in intensive care.

What he said:

“For the first time in my life I feel a sense of pride of what I’ve achieved.”

Andy Murray




Andy Murray

The Scot ended Britain’s 77-year wait for a

Wimbledon men’s singles champion

with victory over Novak Djokovic in a gripping final on Centre Court.

It was his second Grand Slam victory to add to the US Open title he won in 2012.

Murray lost to Djokovic in the 2013 Australian Open final and his Wimbledon win came in the seventh major final of his career.

What he said:

“To come through was such a relief and I can’t imagine I’ll ever feel pressure like that again.”

Christine Ohuruogu




Christine Ohuruogu

Ohuruogu timed her run to perfection as

she stormed to gold in the 400m

at the World Athletics Championships for a second time.

The Londoner triumphed in a photo finish to became the first British female athlete to claim two world titles.

Her time of 49.41 seconds eclipsed Kathy Cook’s national record that had stood since the Los Angeles Olympics in 1984.

What she said:

“My body has gone through war, so I kind of had that on my side. And I knew that I was brave enough to challenge if I had to.”

Justin Rose




Justin Rose

Emotional Rose won the US Open to become the first Englishman to taste victory in one of golf’s majors since Sir Nick Faldo in 1996.

Rose’s maiden major triumph

also made him the first English golfer to lift the trophy since Tony Jacklin 43 years ago, and propelled him to a career-high of third in the world rankings.

After tapping in his final putt, he looked up to the sky with tears in his eyes and admitted later to thinking of his father and long-time mentor Ken, who died from leukaemia in 2002.

What he said:

“It wasn’t lost on me that today was Father’s Day. A lot of us come from great men and we have a responsibility to our children to show what a great man can be.”

To see a Vine video announcing the 10 nominees for BBC Sports Personality of the Year click


Article source:

Sports Personality shortlist revealed

Ten contenders have been shortlisted for next month’s 60th BBC Sports Personality of the Year award.

Athletes Mo Farah, Christine Ohuruogu and Hannah Cockroft are included along with tennis star Andy Murray and cyclist Chris Froome.

Sports Personality of the Year 2013 shortlist expert panel

Sports Personality of the Year trophy

  • Director of BBC Sport –
    Barbara Slater

  • BBC head of TV Sport –
    Philip Bernie
  • Executive editor of BBC Sports Personality of the Year –
    Carl Doran
  • From BBC Radio 5 live –
    Mark Pougatch

    (presenter, 5 live Sport)
  • Three newspaper sports editors (to be rotated annually) – in 2013,
    Alison Kervin

    (Mail on Sunday),
    Adam Sills

    (Daily Telegraph),
    Dominic Hart

  • A multi-sport broadcaster/journalist –
    Sue Barker
  • Three former Sports Personality nominees (to be appointed annually) – in 2013,
    Baroness Grey-Thompson

    Dame Kelly Holmes

    Marcus Trescothick
  • Liz Nicholl,

    chief executive of UK Sport

Golfer Justin Rose, sailor Sir Ben Ainslie, jockey AP McCoy, cricketer Ian Bell and rugby union player Leigh Halfpenny also make the list.

The public will vote for their favourite on Sunday, 15 December.

Voting for the main award will be by phone and, for the first time, online during the programme, which will be presented by Gary Lineker, Clare Balding and Gabby Logan.

In front of an expected 12,000 crowd at the First Direct Arena in Leeds, the latest name to join an

illustrious roll of honour

will be announced.

With an array of candidates to choose from, an expert panel faced some difficult choices

finalising the shortlist.


helped mastermind an America’s Cup sailing victory,


won cricket’s Ashes with England, and there were World Championship doubles for athletes


(wheelchair racing) and


(5,000m and 10,000m).


ruled in cycling’s Tour de France,


starred in the British and Irish Lions’ triumphant tour of Australia and


rode an unprecedented 4,000th winner.


ended Britain’s 77-year wait for a Wimbledon men’s singles winner,


regained her world 400m title and


secured his maiden golf major at the US Open.

In addition to the main prize, there will also be seven other awards:

  • Team of the Year
  • Coach of the Year
  • Overseas Sports Personality of the Year
  • Young Sports Personality of the Year
  • Sports Personality of the Year Diamond Award
  • Helen Rollason Award
  • Sports Unsung Hero

Three former Sports Personality nominees were on an expert panel which decided the shortlist – and the winner will be decided by the public vote on the night.

Baroness Grey-Thompson, Dame Kelly Holmes and Marcus Trescothick were joined by Liz Nicholl, chief executive of

UK Sport, 

and representatives from the BBC and the newspaper industry.

The panel was put together following

criticism of an all-male list

decided via a different method in 2011.

To see a Vine announcing the 10 nominees for BBC Sports Personality of the Year

click here.

Article source:

VIDEO: Sports Personality shortlist announced

The shortlist of 10 contenders for the

BBC Sports Personality of the Year

award is revealed with help from former England cricketer Phil Tufnell and artist Paul Trevillion.

Sailor Ben Ainslie, England cricketer Ian Bell, Paralympic wheelchair racer Hannah Cockroft, long-distance runner Mo Farah and cyclist Chris Froome were the first five names to be announced.

They were followed by rugby union player Leigh Halfpenny, jockey AP McCoy, tennis player Andy Murray, athlete Christine Ohuruogu and golfer Justin Rose.

A capacity crowd of about 12,000 will attend the show at the First Direct Arena in Leeds on Sunday, 15 December.

Available to UK users only.

Article source:

Wiggins’ wheels or a family car? A prize dilemma

All Chris Green really wanted was faster broadband.

What he got instead was a dilemma: he could have enough money to do something nice for his young family, or he could own a bike worth more than his car.

A new kitchen, or a carbon racing machine? It is a dilemma for many middle-aged men in Lycra, but Green’s choice was even harder: this is not just any bike.

Two months ago, having absent-mindedly ticked a couple of boxes on a letter about his internet service from Sky, Green received a large box in the post. He had won a competition.

Inside the box was a


Dogma 2. There was also a Team Sky shirt covered in autographs and a certificate of authenticity signed by Sir Dave Brailsford.

You see, this isn’t just any Pinarello; it’s one of three Pinarellos that made Bradley Wiggins a Sir, gave

Britain its first Tour de France champion

in 2012 and inspired thousands of would-be Wiggos to take to the lanes every weekend.

Green’s first thought was to give it a try. Having recently bought a reasonable bike of his own, the father-of-two hopped on for a quick loop around the streets of his Surrey home.

“It was like going from an Escort to a Ferrari,” says Green. “It felt so light that when I got out of the saddle it was like there was nothing beneath me.”

Sadly, the gears were set up for an Olympic champion, not a 37-year-old amateur with dodgy knees. And there was also the worry about how much it would cost to fix those electronic gears, not to mention the prototype wheels.

Nat Lofthouse at 1958 FA Cup final

Collectors’ item: Nat Lofthouse, one of English football’s greatest forwards, scored 30 goals in 33 games for his country, and 255 league goals for his only club, Bolton Wanderers

No, this was clearly too much bike for Green to actually ride. Could he hang it on the wall?

“It’s very nice, darling, but it’s not going in the living room,” was his wife’s reply.

So this was too much ornament for Green to keep, too. He was going to have to sell it.

But who would buy it? And is it worth more than the sum of its £8,000 parts, or less because it is now third-hand?

The traditional way to answer these questions is to ask an auctioneer, but cycling memorabilia is a new phenomenon in this country.

“We have never sold a bike,” says sports memorabilia expert Chris Hayes of Bonhams auction house in Chester.

10 most expensive items of sports memorabilia

Babe Ruth

  • 1. Babe Ruth jersey c1920, £2.73m
  • 2. The original rules of basketball, £2.69m
  • 3. Mark McGwire’s 70th home run ball, £1.86m
  • 4. Honus Wagner 1909 baseball card, £1.74m
  • 5. Sheffield FC’s 1859 laws of football, £881,250
  • 6. Paul Henderson’s 1972 Canada ice hockey jersey, £790,000
  • 7. Babe Ruth’s bat for 1st home run at Yankee Stadium, £780,000
  • 8. Muhammad Ali’s gloves from 1965 fight against Floyd Patterson, £680,000
  • 9. Babe Ruth’s 1919 contract with Yankees, £610,000
  • 10. Babe Ruth’s 1932 “called shot” jersey, £580,000


Sports Illustrated 

“We did once sell a Lance Armstrong jersey, though. I think it got nearly £600.”

The legal phrase
caveat emptor
– let the buyer beware – springs to mind.

In the global sports memorabilia market it is all about baseball – sporting legend Babe Ruth-related items account for eight of the top 20 prices ever paid at auction. But in the UK, football rules.

Earlier this month, Hayes auctioned off 69 lots of

Nat Lofthouse memorabilia,

including the Bolton and England legend’s 1958 FA Cup winner’s medal for £16,500, and his 1953 Football Writers’ Footballer of the Year trophy for £10,000.

The typical buyer is a dedicated supporter, somebody for whom it is not enough just to go to the games. They want a physical connection with their clubs, something that sets them apart. They might start with a programme or a ticket stub, before moving to the framed shirt.

Then there are the investors, Lovejoy-types having a punt in an uncertain market. They are looking for cups and medals, items that will not fade or tear.

And finally, you have institutional buyers: clubs, countries and national governing bodies trying to fill their halls of fame and trophy cabinets. There are not many cycling museums in the UK, though.

“There hasn’t really been a market for cycling collectibles in this country, but we are just beginning to see one emerge,” says Graham Budd, who runs his own sports memorabilia business in London.

Budd actually sold his first bike at auction last week, and, like Green’s Wiggo machine, it was a pioneer.

“We sold the bike that (Estonian cyclist) Erika Salumae won the sprint on at the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona,” he explains.

“It was a significant moment because the Berlin Wall had just come down and it was Estonia’s first Olympic medal as an independent country.

“The auction was

front-page news 

there, and all over the TV as well. She’s a big star. It went for £8,000 to an Estonian buyer in the end.”

Eight grand for an ugly bike with no brakes or gears? Surely, that has got to be good news for Green and his hi-tech combination of Italian and Japanese engineering.

Erika Salumae's 1992 bike

Erika Salumae was the defending champ when she went to the 1992 Games, but that Olympic sprint title had been won for the USSR: the gold she won on this bike would be Estonia’s first since 1936. Estonia was occupied by Russia from 1940 until 1991.

“All collectors crave owning something that nobody else has,” warns Budd, who also sold

Cyril Knowles’ 

1967 FA Cup winner’s medal for £14,000 last week.

“The problem (Green) might have is we are not sure how unique this bike is, and wherever you have the risk of multiples, value is diluted.

“It happens quite a lot with football shirts – players get given long-sleeve ones and short-sleeve ones, and some like to change into a fresh shirt at half-time. It can be difficult to prove that your shirt is THE shirt.”

Anybody with even a passing knowledge of cycling will know that riders have more than one bike – you can see them on the roof racks of the team cars – but most will also understand that bikes are usually very personal pieces of kit. The handlebar tape might get changed every fortnight, but the frames stay the same.

Team Sky have already confirmed that the bike Green won in the competition is one of three Dogma 2s Wiggins rode during 2012, a stunning campaign that saw him win three big stage races before claiming an unprecedented Tour/Olympic double. But there were also time-trial bikes and a garish yellow number that he used for the final Tour stage in Paris.

Continue reading the main story

I’d love to keep hold of it. But we’re a single-income family with two kids. It’s a no-brainer, really

Chris Green

We also know that one of those other two regular Dogma 2s was won in a competition in The Times and promptly

sold on eBay. 

Team Sky were not very happy about that, says Green, who wants “his” bike to go to a worthy home.

This is why he has chosen not to sell it in an auction, or dip his toe in the uncharted waters of eBay. Green is selling Wiggo’s wheels via the London Cycle Exchange, a “pre-owned performance bicycle club” that gives buyers a guarantee that the top-end, second-hand bike they are buying works and is not wanted by the police.

The bike will be listed on the website 

for the rest of November, and potential buyers can drool over 18 photos, noting the Team Sky water bottles, Wiggins sticker on the side of the top tube and certificate of provenance from Brad’s boss Brailsford.

Bar a change of pedals and the absence of Wiggins’ power meter, a device used to measure a rider’s pedalling power, this is definitely one of THE bikes that won THE biggest, hardest and most famous bike race in the world, and there are not many of those.

“I’d love to keep hold of it,” admits Green. “But we’re a single income family with two kids. It’s a no-brainer, really.”

He knows not everybody will understand – and some posters on

cycling message boards 

have referred to him as “one uncareful owner”, or “money-grabbing” – but how many of us would keep a bike we are not really good enough to ride, or allowed to put on the wall?

If you feel differently, you could always make Green an offer.

Article source:

VIDEO: James on North’s cycling ability

World Champion cyclist Becky James tells Gabby Logan about the cycling ability of her boyfriend, Welsh rugby star George North, as part of an interview for ‘Inspire: The Olympic Journey’.

Becky tells us about her exciting year which saw her become a double world champion in February by winning the women’s sprint and keirin at the World Championships in Minsk.

Also in this month’s episode, Katherine Grainger gets a taste of life on the road with Skeleton Bob World Champion Shelley Rudman.

We also have a profile on rower Captain Heather Stanning, who tells Matthew Pinsent about how she is adjusting to life back in the UK after a recent deployment in Afghanistan.

For more information about how you can get involved in sport near you, go to our

Get Inspired


Article source:

Johnny’s favourite stores