Sport Irish trainer Willie Mullins must choose between several Festival targets for Annie Power, pictured

Annie Power, unbeaten in eight starts, goes on trial at Cheltenham on Wednesday in the Dornan Engineering Hurdle, but nobody seems really sure which Festival race she is on trial for.

Michael McCarthy: Mussels land man in hot water

Nature notebook

Knoydart Peninsula: New kid on the lock

High in the remote reaches of Scotland's Knoydart peninsula, Rob Cowan experiences the ultimate in wild camping - fortified by local mussels and the odd dram of whisky

Essex seafood salad

Serves 4

Miles Kington Remembered: The traditional mussel fair with not a mussel in sight

When the Irish grow up, they give up step dancing, and go over to step drinking, a skilful activity which involves walking across a crowded bar holding pints of stout

Invasion of the giant oysters

Since its introduction in the 1970s, the Pacific oyster has spread like a plague, killing mussels, threatening birds and now even tourism. Tony Paterson reports from Germany on another worrying sign of global warming

Here's to you, old bean: Skye Gyngell's Tuscan feast

To celebrate a visit from an acclaimed Tuscan food writer, Skye Gyngell created a simple, robust feast to make her guests feel right at home

Long bans for father and son in 'ringer' case

Richard Tierney, the conditional rider, found himself both a winner and a loser yesterday in grimly bizarre circumstances. A few hours after being warned off for two years because of his involvement in the running of a ringer at a point-to-point in 2006, he scored at Musselburgh on hurdler Amazing King.

Mussel, spinach and bacon gratin

Serves 4 as a main course or 6 as a starter

Germany Stalling: Former winners haunted by ghosts of past

The hosts have reached seven finals in the World Cup and won three of them, but most of their fans do not believe a fourth title awaits - even on home turf

Brian Viner: Logan's run at Lynam take-off misses the mark

It was billed as a confrontation not between two teams, but between two great individual performers at the top of their respective games: between the relentless trickery of one, and the marvellous sure-footedness of the other.

The eider duck: Fishermen's enemy number one

Thousands of the birds descend on the mussel beds of the Wash, wrecking a traditional trade

Buy Of The Week: Normandy

It took two years to breathe new life into a 17th-century manor house near Cherbourg. Mary Wilson reports

Poachers imperil Scotland's freshwater pearls

JEWELLERS ARE being urged to register their stocks of freshwater pearls in an attempt to stamp out a thriving black market that threatens to wipe out one of Scotland's most important natural species.

Family Outings: Newhailes, Scotland

Cracks are part of this house's charm. Rhiannon Batten discovers a restoration project with a difference, and a library with only one thing missing
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Sepp Blatter resignation: The beginning of Fifa's long road to reform?

Does Blatter's departure mean Fifa will automatically clean up its act?

Don't bet on it, says Tom Peck
Charles Kennedy: The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

Charles Kennedy was consistently a man of the centre-left, dedicated to social justice, but was also a champion of liberty and an opponent of the nanny-state, says Baroness Williams
Syria civil war: The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of this endless conflict

The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of Syria's endless civil war

Sahar Qanbar lost her mother and brother as civilians and government soldiers fought side by side after being surrounded by brutal Islamist fighters. Robert Fisk visited her
The future of songwriting: How streaming is changing everything we know about making music

The future of songwriting

How streaming is changing everything we know about making music
William Shemin and Henry Johnson: Jewish and black soldiers receive World War I Medal of Honor amid claims of discrimination

Recognition at long last

Jewish and black soldiers who fought in WWI finally receive medals after claims of discrimination
Beating obesity: The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters

Beating obesity

The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters
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Ready for rain: 9 best women's festival waterproofs

These are the macs to keep your denim dry and your hair frizz-free(ish)
Cycling World Hour Record: Nervous Sir Bradley Wiggins ready for pain as he prepares to go distance

Wiggins worried

Nervous Sir Bradley ready for pain as he prepares to attempt cycling's World Hour Record
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
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The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
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Thongs ain't what they used to be

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Thurston Moore interview

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From leading man to Elephant Man

Bradley Cooper is terrific