Sport

‘Podium potential’ cash opens new doors for brilliant distance runner

Veteran Pavey aims to follow Radcliffe's long-distance route

It was in 1988 that Jo Pavey first made a mark on the national athletics scene. She was 14-year-old Jo Davis at the time.

Liliya Shobukhova not fearing return of Paula Radcliffe

Even the prospect of Paula Radcliffe’s return after pregnancy (to competitive racing next month and to the marathon this autumn) failed to knock Liliya Shobukhova out of her confident stride yesterday as she prepared for the defence of her Virgin London Marathon title on Sunday - and looked ahead to what she called her “golden chance” of Olympic marathon glory in London in 2012. “I respect Paula, but I don’t fear her,” said the Russian who has established herself as the world number one in the women’s marathon in the 17 months since Radcliffe has been out of commission and given birth to her second child.

The Week in Radio: A sports commentary that goes the distance

It's a fact unwisely overlooked by all those people gearing up to run Sunday's marathon that as Phidippides, the first marathon runner, hit the final ribbon in Athens he promptly dropped dead. It doesn't stop thousands doing the marathon of course, or indeed banging on about it afterwards, so it's a relief to discover that there is actually an interesting subject to talk about in the world of running. As explored in The Sub-Two-Hour Marathon: Sport's Holy Grail, it's the race to beat the current record of two hours, three minutes and 59 seconds.

Farah turns on the heat in Edinburgh

A new year, a new departure for Mo Farah, Britain's male athlete of 2010. "If you can't beat 'em, join 'em," has been a philosophy that has served the 27-year-old leading light of European distance running well with his regular training trips to Kenya to train with the global elite. This week, though, the European 5,000m and 10,000m champion will head off to New Mexico to train with some of the Americans he beat in the feature race in the Bupa Great Edinburgh Cross Country on Saturday.

Twell follows Radcliffe on to the road

Steph Twell, the Commonwealth Games bronze medallist, makes her debut over 10 miles at the Bupa Great South Run tomorrow, and Brendan Foster believes it could be a step to her becoming Britain's next long-distance superstar.

Yamauchi targets Great North glory

It just so happens that Anthony McPartlin and Declan Donnelly have been asked to fire the starting gun to get the 30th edition of the Bupa Great North Run underway in Newcastle tomorrow morning.

Mark Leftly: Seven reasons to be cheerful, plus Asil Nadir for fun

Just don't worry about the FTSE 100 or talk of double-dip recession – the good times are back

Britain's golden medal haul: That's how you do it!

British athletes put wealthy footballers to shame with medal-winning romp at the European championships

Van Commenee targets 15 medals despite absentees

Like any proud, hopeful native of the Netherlands, Charles van Commenee was decked out in orange yesterday. While the Amsterdammer, a lifelong Ajax fan, was keeping his fingers crossed for Robin van Persie and the rest of the Oranje on World Cup semi-final duty in Cape Town last night, the head coach of UK Athletics was hopeful that the immediate future of the British track and field team would be relatively bright – if not quite as dazzling as it might have been.

Bright start to season keeps Ennis on track for heptathlon glory

It was just an hour's drive for Jessica Ennis yesterday, a 57-mile hop from Sheffield to the Paula Radcliffe Track on the outskirts of Loughborough. There are still 795 days to go before the South Yorkshirewoman carries the nation's hopes into the Olympic arena down the M1 in London. The one-eyed mascots are in place and work has started on the running track and the in-field at the 2012 stadium. In the meantime, Ennis is keeping encouragingly ahead of schedule in her quest to present as a talismanic home figure for the main track and field arena.

2020 vision: Lily Allen returns from obscurity to light up the longest-running music show in television history

I know, I know, you've hardly woken up after the King's Speech and you're still recovering from the Doctor Who Christmas Special (Florence Welch – the best doctor ever). But let's do a bit of time-travelling of our own, back across the past decade in the arts, way back to Copenhagen at the end of 2009. Remember the climate-change conference? If it yielded little else, at least it gave us David Hare's The Green Machine. His one-man, real-time, tour-de-force staging of the final 36 hours of the conference, playing 14 heads of state (with his quiff as his only prop), was performed once only, thank God, and has gone down in theatrical legend. Were you one of the seven people said to have stayed awake until the word-for-word recreation of the 4.30am treaty ratification? Bravo!

Kendal duo in mint condition for half-marathon challenge

It was in Kendal in 1869 that Joseph Wiper came up with the recipe for his famous Mint Cake. Some 140 years on, the Cumbrian town has found the ingredients for distance-running success, it would seem. Of the five-strong Great Britain women's team picked to contest the World Half Marathon Championships on the streets of Birmingham this morning, two happen to be products and proud members of Kendal Athletics Club.

Radcliffe to miss half marathon world championships

Three-times former champion Paula Radcliffe has withdrawn from next weekend's world half marathon championships in Birmingham because of illness.

Paula Radcliffe pulls out of Berlin marathon

Paula Radcliffe has decided not to race in the marathon at the World Championships in Berlin after testing her fitness in her first race for 10 months last weekend.

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The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

The shadow Home Secretary on fighting radical Islam, protecting children, and why anyone in Labour who's thinking beyond May must 'sort themselves out'
A bad week for the Greens: Leader Natalie Bennett's 'car crash' radio interview is followed by Brighton council's failure to set a budget due to infighting

It's not easy being Green

After a bad week in which its leader had a public meltdown and its only city council couldn't agree on a budget vote, what next for the alternative party? It's over to Caroline Lucas to find out
Gorillas nearly missed: BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter

Gorillas nearly missed

BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter
Downton Abbey effect sees impoverished Italian nobles inspired to open their doors to paying guests for up to €650 a night

The Downton Abbey effect

Impoverished Italian nobles are opening their doors to paying guests, inspired by the TV drama
China's wild panda numbers have increased by 17% since 2003, new census reveals

China's wild panda numbers on the up

New census reveals 17% since 2003
Barbara Woodward: Britain's first female ambassador to China intends to forge strong links with the growing economic superpower

Our woman in Beijing builds a new relationship

Britain's first female ambassador to China intends to forge strong links with growing economic power
Courage is rare. True humility is even rarer. But the only British soldier to be awarded the Victoria Cross in Afghanistan has both

Courage is rare. True humility is even rarer

Beware of imitations, but the words of the soldier awarded the Victoria Cross were the real thing, says DJ Taylor