Sport Wiggins wins Sports Personality award after his Tour de France and Olympic triumphs

Psychological study reveals how we feel about sportspeople

Cover me in Lycra, put me on the pitch, and - hey presto

David Aaronovitch on sex, sport and the hard sell

Speedway: A bright idea for the bikers in lycra

Norman Fox looks at speedway's attempts to resurrect the roar of yesteryear

These foolish things remind us of... how bloody cold it still is

Fashion works a season ahead, but why do high street shops insist on filling their racks with summer frippery in mid-winter?

To Hell and back, for a crack at the title of toughest nut

This was an event that made television's Gladiators look like a stroll in the park. Richard Smith watched the competitors as they struggled through the Killing Fields, Stalag Escape and the Elephants' Graveyard that make up Tough Guy Sunday.

Letter: Off-pavement

Sir: "Lycra louts" is a misnomer: most pavement cyclists have never worn an item of cycling clothing in their lives (report, 14 January). Confirmed Lycra wearers like myself prefer to take our rightful place in the flow of traffic. Unfortunately, here in Cardiff there are so many people weaving among the pedestrians that some motorists don't seem to realise that cyclists are actually allowed on the road.

pounds 20 fines for `Lycra louts' who pedal on pavement

Cyclists face pounds 20 fines for riding on pavements as a result of a government strategy to double the number of cycle journeys by 2010.

Fashion: A Clean Start

Begin the New Year in a spirit of pure but sensual minimalism: look to the future in fresh white cotton, linen and softest cashmere. Your resolution? To keep life simple

The Investment Column: Courtaulds counts on Tencel

So it doesn't wrinkle, it's tough and it's as soft as silk. But can Courtaulds' "wonder-fibre", Tencel, revitalise the chemical group's flagging fortunes? Courtaulds shares have slumped to 270p, less than 50 per cent of their value five years ago, and 7.5p down on the day on the back of poor first-half results. Pre-tax profits in the six months to September were pounds 62m, 5 per cent down on last year.

Spare-Time: Rock without the roll

Indoor climbing may teach you the ropes, but how easy is it to translate that skill to the great outdoors? Eric Kendall finds a safe foothold on a course in Wales

A home-grown hero of the bold school

Suddenly, we are filled to our puffed-up chests with new heroes. Old foes are being stylishly trounced and we have found the confidence to stare menacingly at targets long avoided. The mocking visions of our frustrating vigil over those sporting arenas most precious to us may yet take some time to disperse but we are freshly delivered of several players of an inspirational sheen.

Is it worth it? Poseur or hosier?

A Rolls-Royce for your legs... We road-test Fogal tights, pounds 37.50 a pair

Chic to cheek

Under the Counter

Cross-country route to ski heaven

Forget the queues for lifts: strike out on your own, says Tina Stallard

TIGHTS OF FANCY

Oooh yes. Lacy tights are the ringer-dinger in thing to wear on your legs this autumn. Thank Prada for this resurgence in 'tack' hosiery (although its cashmere version costs rather more at pounds 95). Lacy tights should be worn with the simplest of outfits to avoid pattern overload. The good news is that for a tenner or so, you can have this year's look: climb into a pair and you will instantly update last year's wardrobe. And those with blotchy legs that never quite got along with sheers will welcome the camouflage effect of all over lace. To complete the effect these tights should really be worn with big clumpy scuffed leather shoes, the sort the girl who never got picked for netball wore. Revenge is sweet.

enough to make bill blush...

Warren Beatty has it, JFK had it, every US politician wants it: that youthful, suntanned image. But how to get it (and how to keep it)? Liesl Schillinger reveals the secrets of the well-preserved American male
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Actors front row from left, Jared Leto, Jennifer Lawrence, Meryl Streep, Ellen DeGeneres, Bradley Cooper, Peter Nyongío Jr., and, second row, from left, Channing Tatum, Julia Roberts, Kevin Spacey, Brad Pitt, Lupita Nyongío and Angelina Jolie as they pose for a
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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
All this talk of an ‘apocalyptic’ threat is simply childish

Robert Fisk: All this talk of an ‘apocalyptic’ threat is simply childish

Chuck Hagel and Martin Dempsey were pure Hollywood. They only needed Tom Cruise
Mafia Dons: is the Camorra in control of the Granite City?

Mafia Dons: is the Camorra in control of the Granite City?

So claims an EU report which points to the Italian Mob’s alleged grip on everything from public works to property
Emmys look set to overhaul the Oscars as Hollywood’s prize draw

Emmys look set to overhaul the Oscars as Hollywood’s prize draw

Once the poor relation, the awards show now has the top stars and boasts the best drama
French connection: After 1,300 years, there’s a bridge to Mont Saint-Michel

French connection: After 1,300 years, there’s a bridge to Mont Saint-Michel

The ugly causeway is being dismantled, an elegant connection erected in its place. So everyone’s happy, right?
Radio 1 to hire 'YouTube-famous' vloggers to broadcast online

Radio 1’s new top ten

The ‘vloggers’ signed up to find twentysomething audience
David Abraham: Big ideas for the small screen

David Abraham: Big ideas for the small screen

A blistering attack on US influence on British television has lifted the savvy head of Channel 4 out of the shadows
Eden Hazard: Young, gifted... not yet perfect

Eden Hazard: Young, gifted... not yet perfect

Eden Hazard admits he is still below the level of Ronaldo and Messi but, after a breakthrough season, is ready to thrill Chelsea’s fans
Tim Howard: I’m an old dog. I don’t get too excited

Tim Howard: I’m an old dog. I don’t get too excited

The Everton and US goalkeeper was such a star at the World Cup that the President phoned to congratulate him... not that he knows what the fuss is all about
Match of the Day at 50: Show reminds us that even the most revered BBC institution may have a finite lifespan – thanks to the opposition

Tom Peck on Match of the Day at 50

The show reminds us that even the most revered BBC institution may have a finite lifespan – thanks to the opposition
Air strikes? Talk of God? Obama is following the jihadists’ script

Air strikes? Talk of God? Obama is following the jihadists’ script

The President came the nearest he has come yet to rivalling George W Bush’s gormless reaction to 9/11 , says Robert Fisk
Ebola outbreak: Billy Graham’s son declares righteous war on the virus

Billy Graham’s son declares righteous war on Ebola

A Christian charity’s efforts to save missionaries trapped in Africa by the crisis have been justifiably praised. But doubts remain about its evangelical motives
Jeremy Clarkson 'does not see a problem' with his racist language on Top Gear, says BBC

Not even Jeremy Clarkson is bigger than the BBC, says TV boss

Corporation’s head of television confirms ‘Top Gear’ host was warned about racist language
Nick Clegg the movie: Channel 4 to air Coalition drama showing Lib Dem leader's rise

Nick Clegg the movie

Channel 4 to air Coalition drama showing Lib Dem leader's rise
Philip Larkin: Misogynist, racist, miserable? Or caring, playful man who lived for others?

Philip Larkin: What will survive of him?

Larkin's reputation has taken a knocking. But a new book by James Booth argues that the poet was affectionate, witty, entertaining and kind, as hitherto unseen letters, sketches and 'selfies' reveal
Madame Tussauds has shown off its Beyoncé waxwork in Regent's Park - but why is the tourist attraction still pulling in the crowds?

Waxing lyrical

Madame Tussauds has shown off its Beyoncé waxwork in Regent's Park - but why is the tourist attraction still pulling in the crowds?