Emma Raducanu has been named BBC Sports Personality of the Year 2021 after her US Open win this year.
The British teenager stunned the world by becoming the first qualifier to win a Grand Slam at the US Open, which followed reaching the fourth round at Wimbledon – all without having won a match on the regular WTA Tour.
Raducanu finished the year ranked 19th in the world, capping a meteoric rise from No 343 at the start of 2021.
- Emma Raducanu on track, excited & taking advice from ‘role model’ Lewis Hamilton
- Emma Raducanu: The British teenager who has taken the world by storm
The 19-year-old beat diver Tom Daley, who was second, and swimmer Adam Peaty, who came third.
Raducanu told the BBC: “It’s such an honour just to be among these nominees – to win it is pretty amazing.
“I watched Sports Personality of the Year growing up, so I’m really humbled to join the amazing past winners – I’m also really happy for British tennis that we managed to get this award again.
“All the support I’ve received this past year has been absolutely insane, and the energy I felt at Wimbledon this year playing in front of my home crowd is something I’ve never felt before.”
Tyson Fury, Raheem Sterling and Dame Sarah Storey were the other three individuals shortlisted for the award, with Sir Lewis Hamilton, who came so close to winning a record eighth Formula One title earlier this month, omitted.
England won the Team of the Year prize after reaching the final of Euro 2020, the side’s first major final appearance since the 1966 World Cup with manager Gareth Southgate winning the Coach of the Year prize.
Southgate praised the backroom team around him, including assistant boss Steve Holland telling the BBC: “Managing in football now is a very complex business. I’m fortunate to work with good people that make it easier for me.”
Four-time Olympic gymnastics champion Simone Biles was named this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award winner.
The 24-year-old has dominated her sport since 2011 but was forced to withdraw from five finals in Tokyo because of a mental block she called the ‘twisties’.
Biles drew credit from fellow athletes across a range of sports for opening up about the mental challenges she was facing.
She did secure a bronze on the balance beam and a silver in the women’s team event.
Scotland and Arsenal Women defender Jennifer Beattie won the Helen Rollason Award for raising awareness of breast cancer.
She was diagnosed with the illness in October 2020 aged 29 but continued to play for club and country.
Skateboarder Sky Brown was chosen as the Young Sports Personality of the Year.
The 13-year-old became Britain’s youngest Olympic medallist in Tokyo last summer when she took bronze in the women’s park event.
Brown won the award ahead of England midfielder Jude Bellingham, 18, and 17-year-old Ellie Challis, who won silver in the S3 women’s 50 metres backstroke event in August, becoming the nation’s youngest Paralympian medal winner.
Meanwhile, Irish jockey Rachael Blackmore was voted World Sports Star of the Year.
She was the first female to win the Champion Hurdle at Cheltenham and followed up a month later with victory at the Grand National, the first woman to finish in the top four of the race let alone win it.
Sam Barlow was the winner of the Unsung Hero award, founding activity group Fit Mums and Friends in 2009.
After her husband died in late 2020, she created a support group for people grieving and experiencing isolation, and is now working in schools in the East Riding of Yorkshire offering sport and athletics sessions to children in deprived areas.
Full list of winners
Sports Personality of the Year: Emma Raducanu
Team of the Year: England Men’s Football Team
Coach of the Year: Gareth Southgate
Helen Rollason Award: Jennifer Beattie
World Sport Star of the Year: Rachael Blackmore
Lifetime Achievement Award: Simone Biles
Young Sports Personality of the Year: Sky Brown
Unsung Hero: Sam Barlow