By Nick Harris
19 December 2010
Tony McCoy, the greatest jump jockey of all time, was crowned the BBC Sports Personality of the Year at a star-studded awards night in Birmingham this evening – and then mentioned the Beeb’s great broadcasting rivals, Sky, in his acceptance speech. He was talking about the delight with which his three-year-old daughter, Eve, had greeted his appearance on TV this morning, letting slip the name Sky before correcting himself to a more neutral ‘on television’.
LATE ADD TO STORY: The BBC video is now online for UK viewers. Watch the slip of the tongue here, at 2min 38sec into the clip, although to see it in context start a few seconds earlier. Fair play to the BBC for keeping it in. You can hearing a murmur of chuckles among those in the audience who realised what he’d said.
McCoy also acknowledged the orchestrated nature of the campaign backing him to win by joking that he owed thanks to all in racing, who he said had probably spent all night voting for him. The Racing For Change campaign had actively worked to gain votes for McCoy, a fearsome competitor who won the Grand National this year for the first time at the 15th time of asking.
The darts legend Phil ‘The Power’ Taylor was the runner-up in the main award and heptathlete Jess Ennis was third.
Diver Tom Daley collected his third Young Sports Personality of the Year Award. The European Ryder Cup team were Team of Year, and Colin Montgomerie the Coach of the Year. Rafa Nadal was Overseas Personality of the Year.
David Beckham collected a Lifetime Achievement award, at the age of 35, and received such a lengthy ovation that he almost cried. His wife Victoria was in floods of tears in the audience.