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From the archive: Scotland's award-winning sports personalities

It is the event that celebrates the best of British sporting talent but it is impossible to overlook Scotland’s annual contribution to the BBC Sports Personality of the Year awards. Here we take a look back at some of our most memorable winners.

The 1967 Celtic team parade the European Cup in front of adoring fans at Parkhead
The 1967 Celtic team parade the European Cup in front of adoring fans at Parkhead

Only four Scots have won the Sports Personality of the Year title outright but in the team, coach and lifetime achievement award categories there have been a huge number of winners.

The four supreme champions were swimmer Ian Black, racing driver Jackie Stewart, athlete Liz McColgan and cyclist Chris Hoy. However, a host of other Scots sportsmen and women have won awards in other titles including Sir Alex Ferguson, Sam Torrance, Colin Montgomerie, Veryan Pappin, Kenny Dalglish and Gavin Hastings.

This year's winner will be unveiled on Sunday, with tennis ace Andy Murray, rower Catherine Grainger and cyclist Chris Hoy amongst those battling it out for the title. However, Murray says he will not be able to attend the ceremony.

Swimmer Ian Black became the first Scot and youngest person to win the Sports Personality of Year award in 1958 after a phenomenal season which saw him take gold in the European Championships and the Commonwealth Games.

The 17-year-old from Aberdeen took gold in the 200m butterfly at the Commonwealth Games in Cardiff and silver in the 400m freestyle. He then won gold again at the European Championships in Budapest, coming first in the 200m butterfly just 20 minutes after winning the 400m freestyle. He rounded off his hat-trick with a win in the 1,500m.

At the Scottish swimming championships, the prodigy also won the 200m, 400m and 800m freestyle, the 400m individual medley and the 200m butterfly, missing out on the 100m by a touch. He then went on to break the 400m individual medley world record in 1959.

Ian, who took part in open sea swimming contests when he was a boy in Inverness, said he was dumbfounded when he was called out of the classroom at Robert Gordon’s College to be told by telephone that he was the first Scot and youngest athlete to win the silver trophy.

He said: “I can assure you that this is most unexpected. There is nothing I can say that I have not already said except thank you very much, especially to the viewers who voted for me.”

Celtic FC’s Lisbon Lions squad scooped the Team of the Year award in 1967 after beating Inter Milan in Lisbon, Portugal to secure the European Cup.

In 1968 the Manchester United squad, which included Francis Burns, Frank Kopel, Pat Crerand, John Fitzpatrick, Denis Law Willie Morgan and Jimmy Ryan, scooped the team title after beating Benfica at Wembley to win the European Championship. The team won the title again in 1999 when it won the English Premier League, the FA Cup and the European Championship. Sir Alex Ferguson also won the Coach of the Year title in 1999, two years before receiving the ceremony’s lifetime achievement award in 2001.

In 1973, motor racing legend Sir Jackie Stewart took  the Sports Personality of the Year crown.

Jackie began racing in Formula Three with Tyrrell in 1964 before moving to British Racing Motors in 1965. However, following his return to Tyrrell, he enjoyed amazing success in Formula One, winning the World Championship in 1969, 1971 and 1973. He is now Britain’s most successful racing driver, with a track record of 27 wins from 99 Formula One races.

He was inducted to the Formula One Hall of Fame in 2002.

Liverpool FC won the team award for the first time in 1977 after the squad, which included Alan Hansen, Graeme Souness and Kenny Dalglish, beat Borussia Monchengladbach in Rome to win the European Championship. The team would later win the title in 1986, with a squad which included Gary Gillespie, Steve Nicol, Kevin MacDonald, John Wark, John McGregor and Alan Irvine, and again in 2001 with Gary McAllister.

Veryan Pappin was part of the GB hockey squad who won the award in 1984. He clinched the title again with the team in 1988.

Sam Torrance received his first award, alongside Sandy Lyle and Ken Brown, as part of the winning European Ryder Cup team in 1985, 18 years after the first squad, which included Eric Brown, Brian Barnes and Bernard Gallacher, scooped the title. The golfer went on to win the award with the Ryder Cup team again in 1987, alongside Sandy Lyle, Ken Brown and Gordon Brand Jnr, 1995, with Colin Montgomerie and Bernard Gallacher, and 2002, with Colin Montgomerie. Colin Montgomerie also won the team award with the Ryder Cup squad in 2010.

In 1990 the Scottish Rugby Union squad scooped the team award after beating England 13-7 to take the Grand Slam title.

Athlete Liz McColgan controversially won the award in 1991 despite receiving less votes than angler Bob Nudd. Following an orchestrated campaign by Angling Times, the fisherman was set to claim the title, however, the BBC decided to discard ballots which had been cast on forms printed in the magazine, meaning Liz was given the award.

The Dundee born athlete won gold in the 10,000m at the Commonwealth Games in Edinburgh in 1986, clinching victory in a British record-breaking time of 31 minutes 41 seconds. She went on to break the British 10,000m record three more times.

Liz was second in the World Cross Country Championships in 1987 and in 1988 she took the Olympic silver medal at 10,000m in Seoul before setting a 10km world road best of 30 minutes 38 seconds in Orlando in 1989, just a week after winning the World Indoor 3,000m silver in Budapest.

She retained her 10,000m crown at the Commonwealth Games in 1990 and in 1991 in Tokyo she took gold in the 10,000m at the World Championships, the performance which won her the Sports Personality of the Year title.

BBC commentator and Olympic 10,000m bronze medallist Brendan Foster said: “It was the greatest performance by a British distance runner.”

In 2000, golfer Tiger Woods was named Overseas Sports Personality of the Year after winning his first Open Championship at St Andrews. Dame Ellen MacArthur was also awarded the Helen Rollason Award, named after the BBC Sports journalist who died of cancer aged 43, in 2001 after becoming the youngest person and fastest woman to sail around the world solo. Ellen’s grandfather is from Skye.

Andy Murray, who will take on Scots rower Catherine Grainger and cyclist Chris Hoy for the Sports Personality of the Year title on Sunday, has already had a taste of success at the awards after being named the Young Sports Personality of the Year in 2004. He was given the award after becoming the first British boy to win the US Open crown.

Finally, six time Olympic gold medal winner Sir Chris Hoy won the award in 2008. Chris, who is also up for the title this year, joined the British track cycling squad in 1996 and won his first Olympic gold in the kilo in Athens in 2004. He then followed this up by winning gold in the keirin, sprint and team sprint in Beijing in 2008 and in the keirin and team sprint in London 2012.

His six medal haul means he is the most decorated UK Olympian of all time, breaking former record holder Sir Steve Redgrave’s total of five golds.

In recognition of his success, the new Commonwealth Games velodrome in Glasgow has now been named after the talented cyclist.

Chris, who was knighted in 2009, said: “My long-term goal was to become an Olympic champion. It wasn’t that I believed it was going to happen, it was just that was my ultimate dream. I set short term and medium term goals to be stepping stones towards that, and with a lot of hard work and a lot of help along the way from different people, I was lucky enough to achieve those.”

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