BBC Sports Personality of the Year: Contenders for 2015 award

Sports Personality 2015: The 12 contenders
BBC Sports Personality of the Year 2015
Date: Sunday 20 December. Venue: SSE Arena Belfast. Time: 18:50-21:00 GMT. Coverage: BBC One, Radio 5 live, BBC Sport website

Who will you vote for to be BBC Sports Personality of the Year for 2015?

The 12 contenders for this year's award have been announced with the winner to be revealed during the live show in Belfast on Sunday, 20 December.

You can vote by phone or online during the programme, which will be screened on BBC One, with further coverage on BBC Radio 5 live and the BBC Sport website.

Here's a look at the sports stars in with a chance of joining the star-studded list of previous winners, which includes Bobby Moore, Princess Anne, Sir Steve Redgrave and David Beckham.

Lizzie Armitstead

Lizzie Armitstead

Age: 26 Sport: Cycling

A dream was realised when Armitstead became world road race champion with a breathtaking triumph in America.

The Olympic silver medallist won the gruelling 130km race by a wheel in Richmond, Virginia.

Armitstead also won a second successive Road World Cup and claimed the British title - just 11 days after being taken to hospital following a crash at the Women's Tour.

What she said: "All the failures I've had in the past, ups and downs, just makes it more special."

What they said: "She's been incredible for putting women's cycling on the map" - Mark Cavendish on Lizzie Armitstead.

Did you know? She warms up for a morning ride with a bowl of porridge, with berries, cinnamon and nuts, and a coffee.

Sports Personality record: First nomination. Four cyclists have previously won the award - Tommy Simpson (1965), Sir Chris Hoy (2008), Mark Cavendish (2011) and Sir Bradley Wiggins (2012).

Lucy Bronze

Lucy Bronze

Age: 24 Sport: Football

England's footballers made history with a best-ever third placed finish at the Women's World Cup in Canada and Bronze was among the stars.

The Manchester City defender was one of eight players shortlisted for the Golden Ball player of the tournament award.

She scored twice as England won new fans - their semi-final attracting a peak audience of 2.4 million viewers back home, despite kicking off at midnight.

What she said: "I'm not aiming to be the best right-back in the world, I'm just aiming to be the best player I can and if they happen to coincide then even better."

What they said: "She is a credit to herself and her family" - Steph Houghton on Lucy Bronze.

Did you know? Bronze used to play the saxophone as a child and still has one at home.

Sports Personality record: First nomination; first female footballer on shortlist.

Jessica Ennis-Hill

Jessica Ennis-Hill

Age: 29 Sport: Athletics

Headline writers called it the "mother of all comebacks" as Ennis-Hill won her second world heptathlon title in August 13 months after the birth of her son Reggie.

She had only decided to compete in Beijing the previous month, having returned to training in the autumn of 2014.

It was the first time in three years she had competed at a major championships in the event which consists of the 100m hurdles, high jump, shot put, 200m, long jump, javelin throw and 800m.

What she said: "We spoke about the bronze medal and that it would be amazing for a silver medal, but we never spoke about gold. I kind of thought it was a little beyond me this year."

What they said: "A supreme competitor, well respected and admired by other athletes" - Denise Lewis on Jessica Ennis-Hill.

Did you know? Ennis is a psychology graduate from the University of Sheffield.

Sports Personality record: 2nd, 2012; 3rd 2010; 3rd 2009. Athletics has provided the Sports Personality winner on 17 occasions, with Kelly Holmes the last victor in 2004. Heptathlete Denise Lewis was second in 1998 and 2000.

Mo Farah

Mo Farah

Age: 32 Sport: Athletics

The first man to pull off a triple double - triumphing in two athletics events at two World Championships and an Olympics.

Farah won his third successive 5,000m world gold medal in Beijing in August, having already retained his 10,000m title.

It completed a magnificent seven for the Somali-born runner - his seventh global track title in a row.

What he said: "It's great to make history. I didn't feel great, my hammy (hamstring) was playing up a bit, but the medical team helped me through it."

What they said: "He's like a conductor of an orchestra, they go at his pace, and they're completely mesmerised" - Steve Cram on Mo Farah.

Did you know? Farah uses an underwater treadmill, which helps him to run extra miles without the same risk of injury as when running outside.

Sports Personality record: 4th, 2013; 4th, 2012; 3rd, 2011. Of the 17 athletics winners, Brendan Foster was the last long-distance runner to triumph in 1974.

Chris Froome

Chris Froome

Age: 30 Sport: Cycling

Four years ago, a British cyclist had never won the gruelling three-week Tour de France. Now Froome has done it twice.

He took over where 2012 winner Sir Bradley Wiggins left off by triumphing a year later, and claimed a second victory in July.

The Kenyan-born Team Sky rider showed great dignity as he shrugged off abuse, including being spat at and having urine thrown over him, to prevail again.

What he said: "No sportsman should have to go through what we went through."

What they said: "He has that real fight to get everything out and give everything to the finish line" - Geraint Thomas on Chris Froome.

Did you know? Froome won a charity bike race aged 13 despite being knocked over by his mother, who was driving alongside.

Sports Personality record: 6th, 2013. Between 2008 and 2012, cycling had three of the five annual award winners.

Tyson Fury

Tyson Fury

Age: 27 Sport: Boxing

In the back yard of a feted world champion who had not lost for 11 years, Manchester fighter Fury claimed one of boxing's biggest upsets.

He became Britain's first world heavyweight champion for six years when outpointing Wladimir Klitschko in Dusseldorf.

The self-styled 'Gypsy King' is unbeaten in 25 fights - 18 of those victories coming via knockout.

What he said: "It is the start of a new era. I will be the most charismatic champion since Muhammad Ali."

What they said: "A phenomenal achievement, amazing to see" - Carl Froch on Tyson Fury.

Did you know? Fury was born three months premature in 1988, weighing in at 1lb - doctors described his chance of survival as slim.

Sports Personality record: First nomination. Four boxers have been honoured - Henry Cooper (1967), Barry McGuigan (1985), Lennox Lewis (1999) and Joe Calzaghe (2007).

Lewis Hamilton

Lewis Hamilton

Age: 30 Sport: Formula 1

Hamilton won a third Formula 1 title to become only the second British man after Sir Jackie Stewart to achieve the feat.

The driver, from Hertfordshire, edged out team-mate Nico Rosberg with a thrilling United States Grand Prix victory, his 10th of the campaign.

Hamilton passed Ayrton Senna's mark of 41 career race wins, and joined his childhood hero by winning three championships.

What he said: "Since I was a little boy, I have wanted to win three Formula 1 world titles - because that's the number that Ayrton Senna won."

What they said: "Every year he has moved the bar up" - Eddie Jordan on Lewis Hamilton.

Did you know? Hamilton first appeared on the BBC's Blue Peter programme aged seven, and won three Blue Peter badges before being honoured with a gold one.

Sports Personality record: 1st, 2014; 2nd, 2008; 2nd, 2007

Andy Murray

Andy Murray

Age: 28 Sport: Tennis

The 2013 BBC Sports Personality helped make history by guiding Great Britain to their first Davis Cup victory for 79 years.

Scot Murray was the team talisman, winning all 11 of his cup matches during 2015, and triumphing three times in more than eight hours on court in the final against Belgium in Ghent.

A two-time major winner in his career, this year he reached the final of the Australian Open and the semi-finals of both Wimbledon and the French Open.

What he said: "It's incredible that we managed to win this competition. I didn't know that would ever be possible. It's great."

What they said: "It's going to be one of his greatest accomplishments" - John McEnroe on Andy Murray.

Did you know? One of Murray's dogs is called Maggie May, after a Rod Stewart song, and has its own Twitter account with nearly 30,000 followers.

Sports Personality record: 1st, 2013; 3rd, 2012; 5th 2011; 7th, 2009; 6th, 2008; 8th, 2007. Also nominated 2005, 2006. Young Sports Personality 2004.

Adam Peaty

Adam Peaty

Age: 20 Sport: Swimming

Gold in the 50m breaststroke meant Peaty was the first man to complete the 50m and 100m double at the World Swimming Championships.

He then helped Great Britain win the mixed 4x100m medley relay gold in a world record time in Kazan.

Peaty, who trains in Derby, has been tipped to be the first British man for 28 years to win Olympic swimming gold at Rio 2016.

What he said: "We fought for every inch. We left it all on the battlefield"- after relay triumph.

What they said: "He wants to be breaking world records and doesn't want an easy ride at all" - Rebecca Adlington on Adam Peaty.

Did you know? Peaty was so scared of water as a young child that he would scream with terror if put in the bath.

Sports Personality record: 10th, 2014. Two swimmers have been BBC Sports Personality of the Year - Ian Black (1958) and Anita Lonsbrough (1962).

Greg Rutherford

Greg Rutherford

Age: 29 Sport: Athletics

Rutherford's gold at the World Championships in Beijing cemented his place as current king of the long jump - adding to his Olympic, European and Commonwealth titles.

Only four other Britons - Daley Thompson, Linford Christie, Sally Gunnell and Jonathan Edwards - have ever held all four titles at the same time.

Rutherford felt ill earlier in the day, with dehydration and a headache, but jumped a stadium record 8.41m - beating his nearest rival by 17cm.

What he said: "It's unbelievable. This was my best ever performance. The stresses this year, I can't even express to you."

What they said: "Greg delivers on the biggest of stages" - Michael Johnson on Greg Rutherford.

Did you know? Rutherford and his father laid a long jump runway and sandpit in his back garden to help with training.

Sports Personality record: First nomination. Long jumper Mary Rand won in 1964, while triple jumper Jonathan Edwards took the 1995 award.

Kevin Sinfield

Kevin Sinfield

Age: 35 Sport: Rugby league

Finished his rugby league career on a high, featuring in Leeds Rhinos' treble-securing Super League Grand Final win against Wigan.

The former England captain spent nearly two decades with the Rhinos, making his debut at 16, and in 2015 became only the fourth rugby league player to pass 4,000 career points.

At the age of 35, the stand-off has switched to union with Yorkshire Carnegie.

What he said: "To top it off with the treble in the final year is unbelievable. It is something I will cherish forever."

What they said: "He's going to go down as one of the best rugby league players" - Brian McDermott on Kevin Sinfield.

Did you know? His sporting hero growing up was former England footballer Gary Lineker.

Sports Personality record: First nomination. A rugby league player has never featured in the top three of the main award, although Wigan (1994) and St Helens (2006) took team of the year honours.

Max Whitlock

Max Whitlock

Age: 22 Sport: Gymnastics

Denying team-mate Louis Smith by 0.01 points, he became the first man to win a gold for Great Britain at the World Gymnastics Championships.

Whitlock, from Hemel Hempstead in Hertfordshire, triumphed in the pommel horse event in Glasgow.

He had won his second silver medal of the championships earlier on Saturday on the floor, and recovered from missing out on an all-around medal where he fell at the start of the high bar routine.

What he said: "It has been a tough year with glandular fever at the beginning of the year and this makes up for everything."

What they said: "An impressive all-rounder in the ultimate circus" - Matt Baker on Max Whitlock.

Did you know? Whitlock did not try gymnastics until the age of seven when a friend at the local swimming club suggested it to him.

Sports Personality record: 7th, 2014. A gymnast has never won the BBC award, although Beth Tweddle was fifth in 2009.

More details on voting terms and conditions here.

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