Sport ‘Mike loves his birds,’ I used to joke but nobody was laughing by the end of the tour

Before The Hangover I and II, before Spike Lee weaved his magic off Broadway in New York and before Mike Tyson was a nice guy, it was my onerous duty to take the big lad up on stage to perform for his fans.

Bryan Redpath is challenging his side to continue their good form

Quins block Redpath's route to play-offs

Gloucester coach Bryan Redpath has challenged his side to keep their push for a play-off place on track by ending their poor run against Premiership leaders Harlequins at Kingsholm today.

Billy Davies, Steve Cotterill and Steve McClaren have all failed, to varying degrees, to turn around Forest’s fortunes

Ouch! Forest are forced to concede that future lies in following the Derby way

Rivals meet on Sunday with Rams' form and finances in better shape. By Jon Culley

Billy Davies, Steve Cotterill and Steve McClaren have all failed, to varying degrees, to turn around Forest’s fortunes

Ouch. Forest forced to concede that the future is the Derby way

Local rivals meet on Sunday with the Rams' form and finances in far better shape

Clearing places run dry as colleges put up 'no vacancies' sign

Universities started putting up the "full" signs last night as the scramble for places continued.

Lambourn legend Hills hands reins to son

Pedigrees count in this sport, and not just for the four-legged participants.

Rolls Royce plant 'may go abroad'

Engine maker Rolls-Royce has come under fire after admitting it is considering building a new hi-tech facility overseas rather than in the UK.

Galea scores hat-trick to keep Rovers in play-off hunt

Crusaders 10 Hull KR 38

Derby Day, By DJ Taylor

Dandies, ostlers and bounders...call the BBC

Samba hints at Blackburn exit

Blackburn defender Christopher Samba has cast doubt over his future at Ewood Park by claiming he would leap at the chance to leave if a "good opportunity" arose.

Carlton drifts after injury scare

It was almost as though he wanted to prove that any and all ranks of society can discover a common derangement in their fascination for racehorses. Carlton House, hot favourite to give the Queen her first success in the Investec Derby at Epsom on Saturday, was yesterday subject of the type of 11th-hour scare that seems de rigueur in this sort of situation. There remains every prospect that he will take his chance – and show his form – but he has certainly emphasised that even a monarch must accept the frailties latent in the breed's own majesty.

O'Brien settles on Derby quartet

Yesterday was a time for some i-dotting and t-crossing, and a little head-scratching, in mission control at Ballydoyle. In the morning, Aidan O'Brien's squad for the Derby was finalised; a quartet – Seville, Recital, Treasure Beach and Memphis Tennessee – is set to challenge for the £1.25m Investec-sponsored purse at Epsom on Saturday, with another who might have done so, Roderic O'Connor, heading for the Prix du Jockey-Club at Chantilly the following day.

Three arrested in £2m VAT probe

Three people have been arrested on suspicion of trying to steal nearly £2 million through false VAT repayment claims, HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) said.

Beatrice and Marvel follow trend in Classic fashion on the Downs

Nobody should need a particular pretext to come here, even on an afternoon like yesterday, when a cold wind hauled heavy cloud up from the Channel and the famous downland panorama seemed to sag miserably beyond the track. But the equivalent fixture last year had made attendance imperative for anyone hoping to go to Epsom, now barely a fortnight away, with all bases covered.

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Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
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Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Middle East crisis: We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

Now Obama has seen the next US reporter to be threatened with beheading, will he blink, asks Robert Fisk
Neanderthals lived alongside humans for centuries, latest study shows

Final resting place of our Neanderthal neighbours revealed

Bones dated to 40,000 years ago show species may have died out in Belgium species co-existed
Scottish independence: The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

Scotland’s immigrants are as passionate about the future of their adopted nation as anyone else
Britain's ugliest buildings: Which monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?

Blight club: Britain's ugliest buildings

Following the architect Cameron Sinclair's introduction of the Dead Prize, an award for ugly buildings, John Rentoul reflects on some of the biggest blots on the UK landscape
eBay's enduring appeal: Online auction site is still the UK's most popular e-commerce retailer

eBay's enduring appeal

The online auction site is still the UK's most popular e-commerce site
Culture Minister Ed Vaizey: ‘lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird’

'Lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird'

Culture Minister Ed Vaizey calls for immediate action to address the problem
Artist Olafur Eliasson's latest large-scale works are inspired by the paintings of JMW Turner

Magic circles: Artist Olafur Eliasson

Eliasson's works will go alongside a new exhibition of JMW Turner at Tate Britain. He tells Jay Merrick why the paintings of his hero are ripe for reinvention
Josephine Dickinson: 'A cochlear implant helped me to discover a new world of sound'

Josephine Dickinson: 'How I discovered a new world of sound'

After going deaf as a child, musician and poet Josephine Dickinson made do with a hearing aid for five decades. Then she had a cochlear implant - and everything changed
Greggs Google fail: Was the bakery's response to its logo mishap a stroke of marketing genius?

Greggs gives lesson in crisis management

After a mishap with their logo, high street staple Greggs went viral this week. But, as Simon Usborne discovers, their social media response was anything but half baked
Matthew McConaughey has been singing the praises of bumbags (shame he doesn't know how to wear one)

Matthew McConaughey sings the praises of bumbags

Shame he doesn't know how to wear one. Harriet Walker explains the dos and don'ts of fanny packs
7 best quadcopters and drones

Flying fun: 7 best quadcopters and drones

From state of the art devices with stabilised cameras to mini gadgets that can soar around the home, we take some flying objects for a spin
Joey Barton: ‘I’ve been guilty of getting a bit irate’

Joey Barton: ‘I’ve been guilty of getting a bit irate’

The midfielder returned to the Premier League after two years last weekend. The controversial character had much to discuss after his first game back
Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

British No 1 knows his consistency as well as his fitness needs working on as he prepares for the US Open after a ‘very, very up and down’ year
Ferguson: In the heartlands of America, a descent into madness

A descent into madness in America's heartlands

David Usborne arrived in Ferguson, Missouri to be greeted by a scene more redolent of Gaza and Afghanistan
BBC’s filming of raid at Sir Cliff’s home ‘may be result of corruption’

BBC faces corruption allegation over its Sir Cliff police raid coverage

Reporter’s relationship with police under scrutiny as DG is summoned by MPs to explain extensive live broadcast of swoop on singer’s home