Sophie Christiansen shortlisted for BBC Sports Personality of the Year
British Para-Equestrian Dressage rider Sophie Christiansen was announced as one of the 16 sports stars on the shortlist for the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award on last night’s One Show.
No Paralympian has ever won the main award before but with eight Paralympic gold medals to her name, including the fabulous three from Rio, Sophie is a more than worthy contender. She’s up against some tough competition with the 16-strong shortlist boasting 13 contenders with Olympic Gold medals.
Nicola Adams – boxing
Gareth Bale – football
Alistair Brownlee –triathlon
Sophie Christiansen – equestrian
Kadeena Cox – athletics/cycling
Mo Farah – athletics
Jason Kenny – cycling
Laura Kenny – cycling
Andy Murray – tennis
Adam Peaty – swimming
Kate Richardson Walsh – hockey
Nick Skelton – equestrian
Dame Sarah Storey – cycling
Jamie Vardy – football
Max Whitlock – gymnastics
Danny Willett – golf
Equestrians have a good record in the contest with previous winners including Zara Phillips and AP McCoy whilst dressage golden girl Charlotte Dujardin finished a brilliant fourth in 2014. This year the equestrian world has two representatives, with show jumper Nick Skelton also listed after his incredible performance with Big Star in Rio resulting in a historic Individual Gold. Our 2016 dressage nominee Sophie’s amazing season included not only winning three Paralympic gold medals but also an incredible year-round performance having not finished lower than second place in any FEI event she contested. She’s definitely deserved of being only the second dressage rider in SPOTY history to be nominated for the prestigious award.
The sparkling awards ceremony takes place this year at the Genting Arena in Birmingham on Sunday 18 December and will be broadcast live on BBC One, with coverage also on Radio 5 live and the BBC Sport website. The result on the night is purely down to the public vote so save the date in your diary. Voting is by phone or online. The details, including phone numbers for each nominee, are announced during the programme and online. To vote online for free, you’ll need to register online with the BBC.