Sport 66-1 shot Auroras Encore, left, won the race last year

The number will have to be whittled down before the race in April

Paddy Power kidney advert cleared by ASA

A Paddy Power ad has been cleared following 27 complaints that it was offensive to kidney dialysis and transplant patients.

Barclays lines up Sir Michael Rake to 'heal reputation'

Barclays is lining up inside candidate Sir Michael Rake for the job of repairing the scandal-hit bank's reputation, reports said today.

Nicklas Bendtner exposes his underwear after scoring for Denmark

Bookmaker to pay £80,000 fine after Denmark striker Nicklas Bendtner reveals sponsored underwear

Paddy Power today agreed to pay the £80,000 fine dished out to Denmark striker Nicklas Bendtner for exposing a pair of underwear bearing the bookmakers' logo.

Nicklas Bendtner exposes his underwear after scoring for Denmark

Nicklas Bendtner facing Uefa punishment over underwear exposure

Nicklas Bendtner was today set to be punished for exposing a sponsored pair of underwear in Denmark's European Championship defeat to Portugal.

England set to open campaign but back home apathy reigns

With England opening their Euro 2012 campaign against the old enemy France today, you might expect the nation to be a sea of St Georges flags, with commuters heading to work humming the team’s latest pop anthem.

BBC chief Caroline Thomson spent £1,194 on taxis in three months

One of the favourites to become the next BBC director general claimed more than £1,000 in taxi fares in three months.

JIM BOLGER: The trainer plans to run Parish Hall in the Irish 2,000 Guineas just one week before a tilt at the Derby

Bolger sets Parish Hall Classic challenge en route to Camelot

Though the race falls only a week before Epsom, the Abu Dhabi Irish 2,000 Guineas on Saturday will not only measure the form of Camelot but could also produce an 11th-hour threat to the odds-on favourite for the Investec Derby.

Sir Des Champs is the leading Irish hope for next year’s Gold Cup

Sir Des Champs must trip heavy fantastic

Though serving its traditional role as both the final fling of the jumps season and a test of the new order established at Cheltenham last month, the Punchestown Festival must this week absorb one or two challenging incongruities.

Grand National photo-finish marred by deaths

Thousands of racecourse spectators and millions of TV viewers watched the closest Grand National in history today, but the event was marred by tragedy as big favourite Synchronised died after a fall.

Big Buck's winning a fourth World Hurdle at Cheltenham

Big Buck's to get Aintree off to a rich start with record 17th win

Three-day Grand National meeting opens with a card for jumps connoisseurs

James Moore: I'm tipping bright lights, cannabis treatments and bets on mobiles

Investment View: These get my nose twitching in the same way that Finian's Rainbow did before he won at Cheltenham

James Moore: It's a gamble, but Corcoran needs to put that zing back

Welcome to the toughest job in gambling, Breon Corcoran. That might seem like a rather strange thing to say given yesterday's sprightly trading statement from Betfair, where Mr Corcoran will soon take over as chief executive.

James Moore: New boss Corcoran is facing long odds to turn Betfair into a real winner

Outlook Welcome to the toughest job in gambling, Breon Corcoran. That might seem like a rather strange thing to say given yesterday's sprightly trading statement from Betfair, where Mr Corcoran will soon take over as chief executive.

Hunt Ball has improved more than any other chaser this season, raised by 73lb in the handicap

Hunt backed to keep the ball rolling at Festival

The racecourse land at Cheltenham is many things to many people; at the gates yesterday, for instance, hoardings advertised its use as a venue for car boot sales and conferences, and the main car park was given over to a full-scale fairground. But 12 days hence, the real helter-skelter will begin, with the opening of the place's raison d'être, the four days of top-class jump racing that is the annual Festival.

Nicky Henderson plans to test Ireland's top novice hurdlers with Captain Conan

Conan goes on reconnaissance mission

It remains to be seen whether Long Run can go to Newbury on Saturday, and Oscar Whisky may yet end up running on the all-weather at Kempton the previous day. But at least Nicky Henderson appears to have guaranteed himself one key Cheltenham Festival trial this weekend, having yesterday committed Captain Conan to a race at Leopardstown on Sunday, when the weather forecast promises at least half a banquet, after a week of very cold gruel.

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Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there