Updated Updated: July 8, 2020

Sports Personality of The Year: Where to Bet

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BBC SPOTY: A Brief Overview

The BBC Sports Personality of the Year, ceremony, or BBC SPOTY takes place every year in December.

It is awarded for excellence in sporting achievement and a number of sportspersons are shortlisted by an expert panel, from which one winner is determined by public vote.

To be considered for the award, one must be either British or reside and spend most of their sports career in the UK.

The award has been running for over 60 years and is highly anticipated every December of each year. The BBC Sports Personality of the Year is also highly regarded, sometimes more so than the World Cup because it encompasses all the sports.

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Since its beginning, the ceremony has grown into eight different awards:

  • Sports Personality Of The Year
  • Team of the Year
  • Coach of the Year
  • World Sport Star of the Year
  • Greatest Sporting Moment of the Year
  • Unsung Hero
  • Lifetime Achievement Award
  • Helen Rollason Award

Nomination Procedure

Besides the expenditure into eight award categories, the BBC SPOTY has also gone through a change in its nomination procedure.

Up until 2012, the procedure involved 30 sports journalists, each submitting a list of top 10 contenders from which the final nominees were determined.

It wasn’t until this procedure produced an all-male shortlist in 2011 that it came under heavy criticism. Following that, the nomination procedure was changed by introducing an expert independent panel.

The panel looks at three criteria to produce a shortlist of contenders:

  • Reflection of UK sporting achievements on the national and international stage
  • Representation of the breadth and depth of UK sports
  • The ‘impact’ of the contender’s sporting achievement beyond the actual sport in question

The final list of shortlisted contenders is revealed at the beginning of the BBC SPOTY award show in December. During its live programme, the public gets to cast their vote and decide the winner.

Top 5 Sportspeople Favorite To Win BBC SPOTY 2019

The likes of William Hill and Paddy Power have opened up betting from the beginning of the year on who will be the BBC Sports Of The Year 2019 winner.

The list of sportspeople and their corresponding odds to win the SPOTY award is put together by taking into account their achievements in sports, as well as the public’s perception of a contender.

Raheem Sterling – Football

Odds 3/1- WilliamHill and PaddyPower

Raheem Sterling


–        2 times Premier League Champion with Manchester City in 2018 and 2019

–        3 times English League Cup winner with Manchester City in 2016, 2018 and 2019

–        1 time English FA Cup winner with Manchester City in 2019

–        Named sportsman of the year at the 2019 British Ethnic Diversity Sports Awards

–        PFA Young Player of the Year 2018-2019

–        2019 Football Writers’ Association Footballer of the Year

–        Runner-up PFA Player of the Year 2018-2019


–        Twice arrested for minor assault against a girlfriend (charges later dropped)

–        Behavior issues: arriving late for to the recent World Cup training camp

Anthony Joshua – Boxing

Odds 8/1 – PaddyPower / Odds 14/1 – WilliamHill

Anthony Joshua


–        Current Unified Heavyweight Champion of the World

–        WBO Champion since March 2018

–        WBA Champion since April 2017

–        IBF Champion since April 2016

–        IBO Champion since April 2017

–        British Heavyweight Champion from 2015 to 2016

–        Commonwealth Heavyweight Champion from 2015 to 2016

–        WBC International Champion from 2014 to 2016

–        Gold Medalist at the 2012 Summer Olympics

–        ABA title holder in 2010 and 2011


–        Placed in prison on remand in 2009 for juvenile behavior – fistfight

–        Pleaded guilty to possession with intent to supply a class B drug in 2011

Dina Asher Smith – Athletics

Odds 8/1- PaddyPower / Odds 9/1 – WilliamHill

dina asher smith


–        Bronze medalist at the 2016 Summer Olympics

–        Silver and bronze medalist at the World Championships

–        Four times gold medalist at the European Championships; one silver medal

–        Silver medalist at the European Indoor Championships

–        Gold medalist at the World Junior Championships

–        Twice gold medalist at the European Junior Championships

–        Twice silver medalist at the Continental Cup

–        Gold and bronze medalist at the Commonwealth Games

Other notable achievements

–        National Record holder in the 100m dash

–        National Record holder in the 200m dash

Tyson Fury – Boxing

Odds 8/1 – PaddyPower / Odds 16/1 – WilliamHill

tyson fury


–        Unified Heavyweight Champion of the World in 2015 as a title holder of WBO, IBF, WBA, The Ring and Lineal Heavyweight champion.

–        IBO International Heavyweight Champion from 2015 to 2016

–        British and European Heavyweight title holder from 2014 to 2015

–        Irish Heavyweight title holder in 2012

–        English Heavyweight Champion from 2009 to 2010

Other notable achievements

–        The Ring Fighter of the Year in 2015

–        The Ring Comeback of the Year in 2018


–        Mental health issues

–        Alcoholism and recreational drug use

–        Criticized for comments stating that performance-enhancing drugs should be permitted in boxing and other sports

Lewis Hamilton – Formula 1

Odds 10/1 – Paddy Power / Odds 8/1 – William Hill

lewis hamilton


–        5 Formula One Drivers’ World Championship Titles: 2008, 2014, 2015, 2017, 2018

–        Three times winner of the DHL Fastest Lap award (most fastest laps in a F1 season): 2014, 2015, 2017

–        Four times winner of the Pirelli Pole Position Award (most pole positions in a F1 season): 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018

–        Holds the record for all-time most career points

–        Holds the record for most wins at different Formula 1 circuits

–        Record-holder for all-time most pole positions and also most grand slams in a season

Other notable achievements

–        BBC Sports Personality of the Year 2014

–        GQ Sportsman of the Year in 2014 and 2015

–        Best Driver ESPY Award in 2017

–        Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire

Place Free Bets on BBC SPOTY 2020:

Betting Tips on BBC SPOTY

Betting on BBC Sports Personality of the Year 2019 is part of the bookies’ novelty and special bets market. It is similar with betting on Eurovision or the winner of Britain’s Got Talent.

As usual, the best odds come with the greatest risk and that is in the beginning of the year all the way up until the award show in December. At the beginning of the year, bookies generally list the sportspeople that had great successes or have shown remarkable potential in the previous years. As the year progresses and the sportspeople start performing, their results influence their odds.

The odds drop drastically during the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award in December when the list of sportspeople is whittled down to only a few contenders. It is from this shortlist of nominees that the public votes and determines the winner.

Betting Strategy

First of all, there is no magic bullet betting strategy to guarantee you a winning bet slip. There are too many variables to take into account:

  • The sportsperson’s performance through the year will vary, it can have its highs and its lows
  • Injuries that may occur
  • Who will the independent panel put on the shortlist of nominees?
  • Who will the public ultimately vote and decide the winner?

On top of those variables, there is also the fact the BBC Sports Personality of the Year includes all the sporting events. Even to the fiercest bettor it is nearly impossible to keep track, on an individual basis, of all the sports persons events and performances throughout a year.

Betting Tips

But that bettor, whether a huge sports fan or none at all, can still follow some basic tips to increase the chances of winning a bet on BBC SPOTY awards:

  • Look at the shortlist of nominees from recent BBC SPOTY editions. Notice if the same name appears throughout the years. For example, Lewis Hamilton won the awards in 2014. Since then, he has been shortlisted each year except in 2016. This year he is ranked first in the Formula 1 standings. The bookies reflect that success, by giving Lewis Hamilton odds that put him in the top 5 favoured to win the awards this year.
  • Study what the bookies have on offer and their odds. You might not know who some of the sports persons are. Yet, they may have 20/1 odds of winning the BBC SPOTY.
  • Read sports magazines and newspapers, hard copy or online. Notice the names that show the most often and the reason for it. By this stage you should have your own shortlist of contenders to take things further.
  • Go through the contenders’ social media and have a look at their following base. Go through the comments to see what the public says. It is not entirely accurate, but it is the public who votes the winner after all. So a sportsperson with a massive, active, and positive following base does have better chance to win the SPOTY than someone not very well known.
  • Look at your shortlisted contenders outside the world of sports. This is also a criterion the expert panel uses when shortlisting nominees. If a sportsperson has expressed bad or illegal behaviour, this will negatively impact the public’s opinion.

The History of BBC SPOTY

spoty trophy
The trophy was created in the 1950s and cost about £1,000.

In April 1954 began Sportsview, the first regular sports programme televised by BBC. It was suggested and created by television executive Paul Fox. That same year, Paul Fox came up with the idea to create a yearly BBC Sports Personality of the Year award.

As described by Mr Fox himself, to vote for a winner in the inaugural year of the award, one had to:

  • Buy the Radio Times magazine and find the coupon for the award
  • Fill in the coupon with the chosen winner
  • Send the coupon in by post

More coupons came in than expected so Paul Fox took home three or four bags of them and had his young children help to tally up the results. Somewhat surprisingly, the man who had set a world record in the 5000m race, Chris Chataway, came out as a winner against the first man to run a mile under 4 minutes, Roger Bannister. About 14,500 votes were cast in the first ever BBC SPOTY.

It’s been over 60 years since the inaugural edition of BBC Sports Personality Of The Year award which drew in 14,500 votes. Presently, the ceremony draws in millions of votes and it has expanded into eight different award categories, with BBC SPOTY still the main one. Needless to say, in the last 60 years the world of sport has seen some drastic changes. Yet, the BBC Sports Personality Of The Year award has remained a constant, with millions of people turning in each December to see the winner announced.

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