Lewis Hamilton loses Sports Personality of the Year Award for a second year

Posted on | Author Keith Collantine

Lewis Hamilton\'s trophy cabinet gets some much-needed respite
Lewis Hamilton's trophy cabinet gets some much-needed respite

He may be the youngest ever Formula 1 world champion but the British public snubbed Lewis Hamilton in the voting for Sports Personality of the Year 2008.

Hamilton was beaten by cyclist Chris Hoy, who was supposed to be racing Hamilton in the Race of Champions at Wembley today. That event was cancelled due to safety concerns.

Hamilton finished second to Joe Calzaghe last year. The boxer was among Hamilton’s rivals for the award once again this year along with Rebecca Adlington (swimming), Ben Ainslie (sailing), Christine Ohuruogu (athletics), Andy Murray (tennis), Nicole Cooke, Rebecca Romero and Bradley Wiggins (all cycling).

Hamilton has been handed a string of awards since he won the 2008 world championship. He has already scooped the Autosport international racing driver of the year award plus a BRDC Gold Star and the Richard Seaman trophy. On Friday he collected the F1 world championship trophy at the FIA Gala.

British racing drivers have a tradition of success in the Sports Personality of the Year Award. John Surtees, Stirling Moss, Jackie Stewart, Nigel Mansell (twice) and Damon Hill (twice) have all won (Surtees doing so for motor cycle racing, five years before he became F1 world champion). Mansell and Hill are two of only three people to win the award twice.

But Hamilton will have to wait another year to add his name to the list.

59 comments on “Lewis Hamilton loses Sports Personality of the Year Award for a second year”

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  1. Rubbish.

    Bloke pedals a bike for half hour and wins it. Lewis races for a full year and gets second again.

    He was never gonna win it during an olympic year though, espicially due to Team GB’s performance.

  2. Still, he’s got another go next year. No-one will think about cycling again still 2012.

  3. Chris Who? Never heard of him. I’m in New Zealand, and a lot of people hear have no idea what Formula 1 is. Despite that, nearly everyone knows who Lewis Hamilton is. He’s a worldwide name. He’s a real love him or hate him character that the public attach to.

    Surely, being known on a worldwide scale would qualify him to win this title?

    1. A fellow NZer! i’m not alone at the bottom of the world!

  4. Well done and all credit to Chris Hoy… but next time its gotta be Lewis…

  5. Cameron

    No not at all. It’s hard to imagine how Hoy could be any more dominant in his event. The British public voted for the right man in my view.

    When Lewis takes the title convincingly he’ll take the SPOTY.

    This year had some extremely strong contenders which has not always been the case.

    In 1997 Greg Rusdeski won it just for getting to a grand slam final and in 1998 Michael Owen won it on the back of one, albeit brilliant, goal in the World Cup.

    Calzaghe was the right choice last year also. His win over Kessler confirmed him as the undisputed super-middleweight champion and a pound-for-pound top 3-4 fighter.

  6. Yes, I’m not a fan of Hamilton – but I truly believed that Chris Hoy deserved the title. Big congratulations to him on winning this award.

  7. David – Interesting, I really don’t know much at all about the other contenders although I met Hoy on Wednesday and he has the largest thigh muscles I’ve ever seen! I guess that’s his equivalent of a 2.4-litre V8…

  8. Is this the first time an F1 driver hasn’t won the BBC award even though he won the Drivers’ Championship? I know Hill and Mansell won during their glory years in ’92 and ’96, but I wasn’t around the time before that that an F1 driver won the award.

  9. ajokay

    James Hunt came second to figure skater John Curry in 1976.

    Jackie Stewart won the award only after his third championship in 1973.

    Stirling Moss won in 1961 and John Surtees in 1959 when he was still riding bikes

  10. And what about Jim Clark – two world titles (one in the same year as winning the Indianapolis 500) and apparently he never won the award either…

  11. Clark came second to Tommy Simpson in 1965. Simpson was World Cycling Champion in that year but his legacy was tarnished by revelations of drug use after his death during the climb of Mont Ventoux in the 1967 Tour de France.

    Clark came third in 1963

  12. Bloke pedals a bike for half hour and wins it. Lewis races for a full year and gets second again.

    You’re joking right?

  13. Not really bothered by the Sports Personality of the Year award, and I usually am not one to support someone just because they’re from the same place…but given that Edinburgh’s produced enough rubbish characters in recent years, it was nice for Chris Hoy to win it if just for that reason.

    But meh, Lewis Hamilton could’ve won it and I would have been equally apathetic…

  14. Remember when Jenson was nominated for just winning one race?

  15. He’d probably be nominated if he finished second now.

  16. There’s probably a bit of underdog to it as well. Athletes in Britain don’t seem to get the adulation they do in Australia (footballers excluded). So good on him. Lewis has had a pretty easy time of it, let’s be honest.

    Chris Hoy is one of those feelgood, come out of nowhere stories. Lewis, well, we all knew it was going to happen. :-)

  17. Lewis did not look disappointed that he did not win this evening. It would have been great if he had won. But it does not matter, he is world champion and that is all that matters. Well done to Chris.

  18. Roger Carballo AKA Architrion
    14th December 2008, 23:49

    I feel sorry, really. Seems like we’ve missed another Senna comparisson speech. I will not get enough of it till I hear it another thousand times. Lewis is Senna reincarnated…. Uauuuu.

    By the way, congrats to the winner. A real olympic sportsman will always be greater than any F1 driver. I mean trully olympic sports like athletism, boxing, swimming, and all that kind of sports that makes what olympics sports are.

  19. @David Watkins

    Couldn’t agree more. Hoy has utterly dominated an Olympic sport winning everything in sight. I often feel the Sports Personality award goes to the popular sports rather than the most deserving candidate. In this case, a relatively minor sport has won and that goes to show how much of an impact Chris Hoy has made. Hamilton would have won in a less successful year for British sport, but given the scrappy nature of the F1 championship this year the best man has won.

    I do wonder though if the the negative press surrounding Hamilton’s move abroad, or the over the top coverage that has some people in the UK wanting him to lose, meant he missed out on a lot of public votes?

  20. Hoy deserved the award he absolutely dominated the opposition in the most glamourous and toughest event in the year – the Olympics.

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