Sporting stars attend BT British Olympic Ball

10:33 01 December 2012

Tom Daley attended the British Olympic Ball at the Grosvenor House Hotel. Picture: /PA Wire

Tom Daley attended the British Olympic Ball at the Grosvenor House Hotel. Picture: /PA Wire

Britain’s London 2012 heroes walked the gold carpet last night at the BT British Olympic Ball.

Denise Lewis was among the guests. Picture: Lewis Whyld/PA WireDenise Lewis was among the guests. Picture: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire

The athletes gathered at the fundraising event at Grosvenor Park hotel in central London, where they reacted to the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award nominations.

Olympic gold medallist Alistair Brownlee admitted he was sad not to make the shortlist.

The selector’s panel for the BBC award said it was a tough decision to leave the inspirational triathlete off the 12-strong shortlist.

But the 24-year-old from Leeds tipped cycling sensation Bradley Wiggins or double gold medallist Mo Farah to win the award.

Alistair Brownlee said he was "a bit sad" not to have made the BBC shortlist. Picture: /PA WireAlistair Brownlee said he was "a bit sad" not to have made the BBC shortlist. Picture: /PA Wire

Brownlee said: “I think the list is kind of fair on the whole, I think everyone knew it was going to be a very, very hard year for British sport and what a fantastic year it has been so it’s hard to pick the list. It is what it is.

“Of course I’m a little bit sad not to be on it but someone picks that and it’s up to them whether they leave you on or off or not, there’s nothing I could have done about it so I’m not bothered.”

Meanwhile, diver Tom Daley said he would love the winner to be one of the three Paralympians nominated.

The 18-year-old said: “It’s very tough this year, there’s so many worthy people to go on to the Sports Personality list.

Former footballer Fabrice Muamba. Picture: PA WireFormer footballer Fabrice Muamba. Picture: PA Wire

“For me, I’d love it to be, I know this kind of a bit traitor-ish, but I’d love it to be a Paralympian. Sticking with my roots I’d love Ellie Simmonds to go up there, Ellie Simmonds or David Weir, I think they are really deserving winners.”

Victoria Pendleton, another 2012 gold medal winner, said she was not surprised to be left off the list, despite being commended by the selector’s panel.

The cyclist, who was voted off BBC dance competition Strictly Come Dancing last week, said: “I’ve never made the shortlist in my career so I didn’t expect to this time round and with so many winners at the Olympics it’s so hard to choose, I don’t know how they’ve done it. It would have been a close to impossible task, so yeah, it’s cool.”

But the 32-year-old tipped fellow cyclist and double-gold medal winner Laura Trott, another surprising omission from the shortlist, to get another chance to win the award.

Pendleton, who has now quit competitive cycling, said: “I’ve got no doubt in my mind that Laura will have another chance at that because there’s no way she’s going to win any less than two (golds) next time round, maybe more.”

The ball was attended by Team GB Olympians from all 26 summer sports and over 70 London 2012 Olympic medallists including Rebecca Adlington, Anthony Joshua and “Super Saturday” star Greg Rutherford.

The athletes “inspired a nation” with “indelible memories”, according to Lord Coe, who made a speech at the sold-out gathering.

The British Olympic Association (BOA) chairman said: “I would like to congratulate and pay tribute to the athletes of Team GB for the part each of you played in making London 2012 such a remarkable success.

“You inspired the nation. You inspired a generation - indelible memories that will leave a glow for years to come.”

Speaking before the event, Lord Coe said the BOA fundraising event was the start of the long road to the Rio Olympics in 2016.

Latest Stories

25 minutes ago
Myles Lovell saved the lives of two people - and now wants to know how they are doing [Picture by St John's Ambulance]

A man who saved the lives of two people after their car flipped over is appealing for them to get in touch.

Read more
The woman was attacked in a house in Hatherley Road, Walthamstow (Picture: Google Streetview)

A woman was stabbed in the neck and a six-year-old child injured after they were attacked at a house in Walthamstow in broad daylight.

Read more
07:49
Boris Johnson is angry his plans for a new airport in the Thames estuary have been rejected (Photo by Matthew Lloyd/Getty Images)

Boris Johnson has reacted angrily to the decision by the Airports Commission to reject plans for ‘Boris Island’, accusing its author Sir Howard Davies of setting the debate on aviation expansion back by half a century.

Read more

Top Stories

Promotions

Advanced running and training technology for beginners up to elite athletes

If you’re thinking of adding running treadmill to your fitness routine, you’re on the right track! There are several advantages to running on a treadmill versus running outdoors.

Renault-Zoe

The Renault ZOE follows on from the introduction of the electric Fluence ZE and Twizy, but unlike the former, the ZOE was designed from the ground up as an electric vehicle.

When no simple way to find Real Ale was at hand, 4 Ale enthusiasts got together to allow anyone with a smart phone to find Real Ale no matter where they happened to be, this was the birth of the Perfect Pint app.

Quizzes

Can you guess which bridge crossing the Thames in London which? (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

Do you know your Blackfriars from your Southwark, Cannon Street from Waterloo, or do all of London’s bridges look alike to you?

Read more
Amy Winehouse's second album became a classic

Are you an Amy Winehouse superfan?

Read more
I'm only going to say this once: Stand. On. The. Right.

James Bond is Britain’s most famous secret agent, and the capital is its most famous city, so it makes sense that 007 would live and work here when he isn’t gallivanting around the world.

Read more