Sport Big Buck's wins in 2012 at Cheltenham, where he returns on Saturday after missing last year

Big Buck’s is back. More than a year after effortlessly extending his unbeaten sequence to 18, the four-time World Hurdle winner returns to Cheltenham for the Cleeve Hurdle on trials day to great fanfare and the delight of everyone connected with the sport.

Madison squares Pipe circle

Out-of-form trainer revives season and a family tradition in the Hennessy

Trabolgan shines in school report

Poor old Nicky Henderson is really struggling, now that Mick Fitzgerald has finally packed up. His new stable jockey, Barry Geraghty, is limping along at a strike-rate of one-in-three, and Henderson could scrape together only the five winners last Saturday. The three at Ascot were all ridden by Geraghty, while yesterday the new partnership also made a perfect start to the Hennessy Gold Cup meeting, one of the biggest of the year here at Henderson's local track.

Costello ready to get into Character

No one is more aware of the perils of a jockey's profession than a jockey himself. And Dougie Costello, counting the days until his plum ride on Character Building in Saturday's Hennessy Gold Cup, is counting no chickens. "It's only Tuesday," he said yesterday. "In our terms, it's still a long time to go until the Hennessy, so right now I'm thinking more about Wetherby tomorrow. But fingers crossed I make it. To ride a horse like that in a race like that will just be such a pleasure."

Peter Hennessy: Blink and you'd miss it. Brown said sorry

Before the Prime Minister updates his pioneering National Security Strategy, he must order a full inquiry into the road to war

Denman wins Gold Cup

Denman destroyed his rivals to win the totesport Cheltenham Gold Cup.



Celebrations in Champagne as wine region expands

Faced with the problem of rocketing demand and a limited growing area, the fiercely protective guardians of France's Champagne region have settled upon a simple solution – extending the boundaries within which the wine can be produced.

High spirits in cognac

A decade ago, the brandy industry was on its knees. Now, from Los Angeles to Beijing, it is the most in-demand drink in the world, and those who make it are feeling a very warm glow

Kicking King returns with honour intact

Experience has taught trainers to view the treatment of tendon injuries in steeplechasers as the equivalent of using glue or sticky tape on a snapped elastic band. Every now and then, however, their patience will be rewarded with the sort of comeback that yesterday introduced fresh substance to a possibility that had seemed to stretch credulity to the limit – that Kicking King could yet retrieve the Totesport Cheltenham Gold Cup.

Hourigan puts Hi Cloy on Aintree path

The Grand National beckons for one of Ireland's evergreen characters, Hi Cloy, after a determined success at Thurles yesterday. And an endorsement of his chances came not only from his trainer, Michael Hourigan, but also from someone who has already been there, done that at Aintree. "Ginger McCain tried to buy him," said Hourigan. "I had Amberleigh House in his early days, before Ginger did, and Hi Cloy is much better than him."

Russell perfect for stealth test on Abragante

In a golden generation of jump jockeys, the eminence of Ruby Walsh can be usefully gauged by the opportunities being seized in his absence. The most obvious beneficiary remains Sam Thomas, who hopes to build on his achievements last weekend when riding Denman, the favourite, in the Hennessy Cognac Gold Cup at Newbury on Saturday. But the man who rides Denman's chief rival, Abragante, finds himself in a position to make a defining breakthrough of his own.

Somerset College: The building blocks of a sustainable future

One college is leading the way in pioneering new techniques in construction, says Neil Merrick

Racing: King George procession for Azamour

Aga Khan's colt glides from last to first to dispel all stamina doubts and break a long-standing track record

Racing: Prince gives Hobbs his century

Supreme Prince earned his owner a regal reward and handed his handler his hundredth victory of the season with an impressive triumph in the £100,000 Vodafone Gold Cup at Newbury yesterday.

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Britain First criticised for using actress's memory to draw attention to their 'hate-filled home page'

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JK Rowling is releasing a new Harry Potter story about Dolores Umbridge
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Russell Brand was in typically combative form during his promotional interview with Newsnight's Evan Davis
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Thought you'd seen it all after the Jeremy Paxman interview?

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On The Apprentice, “serious” left the room many moons ago and yet still we watch
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Greatest mystery about the hit BBC1 show is how it continues to be made at all, writes Grace Dent

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Funds raised from the sale of poppies help the members of the armed forces with financial difficulties
voicesLindsey German: The best way of protecting soldiers is to stop sending them into conflicts
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A scene from David Ayer's 'Fury'
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"History is violent," says the US Army tank commander Don "Wardaddy" Collier

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Wilko Johnson, now the bad news: musician splits with manager after police investigate assault claims

Wilko Johnson, now the bad news

Former Dr Feelgood splits with manager after police investigate assault claims
Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands ahead of the US midterm elections

Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands

The Senator for Colorado is for gay rights, for abortion rights – and in the Republicans’ sights as they threaten to take control of the Senate next month
New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

Evidence found of contact between Easter Islanders and South America
Cerys Matthews reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of Dylan Thomas

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The singer reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of the famous Welsh poet
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Homebase has announced the closure of one in four of its stores. Nick Harding, who never did know his awl from his elbow, is glad to see the back of DIY
The Battle of the Five Armies: Air New Zealand releases new Hobbit-inspired in-flight video

Air New Zealand's wizard in-flight video

The airline has released a new Hobbit-inspired clip dubbed "The most epic safety video ever made"
Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month - but can you stomach the sweetness?

Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month

The combination of cinnamon, clove, nutmeg (and no actual pumpkin), now flavours everything from lattes to cream cheese in the US
11 best sonic skincare brushes

11 best sonic skincare brushes

Forget the flannel - take skincare to the next level by using your favourite cleanser with a sonic facial brush
Paul Scholes column: I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo

Paul Scholes column

I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Jones and Rojo
Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

While other sports are stalked by corruption, we are an easy target for the critics
Jamie Roberts exclusive interview: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Jamie Roberts: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Wales centre says he’s not coming home but is looking to establish himself at Racing Métro
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A crime that reveals London's dark heart

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?
Meet 'Porridge' and 'Vampire': Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker

Lost in translation: Western monikers

Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker. Simon Usborne, who met a 'Porridge' and a 'Vampire' while in China, can see the problem
Handy hacks that make life easier: New book reveals how to rid your inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone

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KidZania: It's a small world

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