BBC Sports Personality of the Year (SPotY) in numbers

The BBC Sports Personality of the Year (SPotY) Awards takes place at a star-studded ceremony at the BBC’s new MediaCityUK complex in Salford tomorrow (Thursday) night. Cycling world champion and Tour de France green jersey winner Mark Cavendish is the bookies’ favourite to become the first road cyclist since Tom Simpson in 1965 to win the coveted award. You can find out more about the final shortlist of ten in my preview, but here is a breakdown of all the statistics relating to the major SPotY awards – in numbers.

Sports Personality of the Year

Cycling world champion Cavendish is this year's SPotY favourite (image courtesy of Wikipedia

58– This year is the 58th time the Sports Personality of the Year awards have been held.

10 – Number of candidates shortlisted for the main SPotY award: Mark Cavendish, Darren Clarke, Alastair Cook, Luke Donald, Mo Farah, Dai Greene, Amir Khan, Rory McIlroy, Andy Murray and Andrew Strauss.

0 – Number of women among the shortlist of ten.

6 – Number of sports represented among the ten finalists: golf (three), athletics (two), cricket (two), cycling, boxing and tennis (one each).

5 – Four of this year’s final ten are current world champions or world number ones: Cavendish, Donald, Farah and Greene. Khan lost his world title belts to Lamont Peterson a week ago. Cook and Strauss, are members of the England Test cricket team which is ranked number one, but neither is ranked number one in the individual rankings.

1 – Of this year’s ten nominees, only Darren Clarke has previously finished in the top three (second in 2006).

2010 SPotY winner Tony McCoy (image courtesy of Wikipedia)

0 – None of last year’s top three – Tony McCoy, Phil Taylor and Jessica Ennis – are shortlisted this year.

17 – Wins by track-and-field athletes, more than any other sport.

17 – Number of different sports represented by winners of the main SPotY award.

1 – Number of times SPotY has been won by more than one person – ice dancers Jayne Torvill and Christopher Dean in 1984.

3 – Number of people who have won SPotY more than once: Nigel Mansell, Henry Cooper and Damon Hill.

2 – Number of British cycling road race world champions: Cavendish and Tom Simpson. The latter won the rainbow jersey in 1965, and was voted SPotY that same year – the only road cyclist to have received the accolade to date.

Overseas Sports Personality

Ali is one of only two three-time Overseas SPotY winners (image courtesy of Wikipedia)

52 – This will be the 52nd year in which both the Overseas Sports Personality of the Year and Team of the Year have been awarded.

15 – The Overseas SPotY award has been won by tennis players 15 times, more than any other sport.

18 – Americans have won the award 18 times, ten more than any other nationality.

3 – Only two sports stars have been awarded the Overseas SPotY three times: Muhammad Ali and Roger Federer. Greg Norman and Usain Bolt are the only other multiple winners.

4 – Overseas SPotY has been won by more than one person on four previous occasions, the last in 1996. It has been shared once by a figure skating pair, and three times between representatives of two different sports.

Team of the Year

12 – Football teams have won Team of the Year on 12 previous occasions, more than any other sport. However, no football team has won the award since Liverpool in 2001.

7 – The winning Team of the Year has come from outside of the UK and Ireland only seven times. Om five of those occasions the winner was the European Ryder Cup team. The other two were the West Indian cricket team of 1963 and the Canadian Nijinksy horse racing team of 1970.

2 – Team of the Year has been shared twice: 1969 (British Ryder Cup team and women’s 4 x 400 metres relay squad) and 1991 (English rugby union team and British men’s 4 x 400 metres relay squad).

Other awards

13 – This will be the 13th year in which the Lifetime Achievement, Coach of the Year and Helen Rollason awards have been presented. The former was first awarded in 1996 and then every year since 2000, while the others have been presented annually since 1999.

6 – Six of the 12 previous winners have been football players or managers.

7 – Seven previous winners have been British.

The late, great Seve Ballesteros won two Lifetime Achievement awards (image courtesy of Wikipedia)

2 – Golfer Seve Ballesteros was given the award twice (in 1997 and 2009).

2 – Arsenal manager Arsène Wenger is the only multiple winner of Coach of the Year (in 2002 and 2004).

6 – Six of the 12 previous winners have been football managers.

1 – The Helen Rollason Award, presented for outstanding achievement in the face of adversity, has only been won once by a non-Briton: South African athlete Oscar Pistorius in 2007.

2 – Athletics is the only sport which has provided two Helen Rollason Award winners: Pistorius and wheelchair athlete Tanni Grey-Thompson (2000).

11 – This will be the 11th time the Young SPotY award will be presented. Only sportspeople aged 16 or under on January 1st of the year of the award are eligible.

3 – Diver Tom Daley is the only multiple winner of Young SPotY, having won three times (2007, 2009 and 2010).

13Daley is also the youngest ever winner, winning in 2007 at the age of 13.


About Tim
Father of three. Bit of a geek. That's all, folks.

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