Last month, we produced a shortlist of 10 British athletes and asked you for your thoughts - both on the ones we named, and any other athletes occupying your thoughts ahead of the Beijing Games.

We had a great response, which certainly affected at least one decision on who made it into our final 10 to watch. And now we're publishing full profiles of each of those 10 athletes.

The idea is not to simply pick the top 10 British medal prospects. We wanted a greater depth and variety, covering as wide a range of sports as we could, and taking into account other reasons why athletes come to our attention - their circumstances, personality and history as much as their ability.

With the help of your comments and a good old-fashioned newsroom debate, here are the 10 we've picked (plus a snippet from their profile):

Ben Ainslie - British sailor aiming for Finn gold in Beijing. Fancies dinner with Churchill, JFK and Angelina Jolie.
Tom Daley - Devon 14-year-old whose medal prospects may be slim, but were you an Olympian at his age? Also a big R Kelly fan.
Frankie Gavin - Southpaw with a fighting chance of Olympic gold. Chills out to UB40's cover of Red Red Wine in the gym.
Kath Grainger - Rower bidding for GB's first women's rowing gold. Has two law degrees (soon to be three) and a karate black belt.
Phillips Idowu - Triple jumper with medal prospects as bright as his haircut. Used to play in a steel drums band.
Katy Livingston - Modern pentathlete looking to extend Britain's superb run in the sport. Supports Sheffield Wednesday and has a penchant for handbags.
Christine Ohuruogu - Back from her one-year ban and now women's 400m world champion. One of eight children, enjoys political literature.
Shanaze Reade - Already a huge star in the world of BMX, aged 19. Likes to dress up: "I love to be queen of the after-party!"
Liam Tancock - Backstroke specialist going up against the American big guns. Has his eye on a yellow lamborghini.
Bradley Wiggins - Triple world champion track cyclist looking to beat his Athens haul. Does a decent Michael Caine impression.

Wiggins faced very stiff competition from the likes of Chris Hoy and Victoria Pendleton to earn the track cycling spot (with seven world champions in their ranks, we had to have at least one in our 10).

Your comments proved invaluable in helping to make the decision - although I'm aware many people plumped for Hoy, Pendleton, Rebecca Romero and others. One or two others have changed from our initial line-up, too.

That's the great joy of reporting on this British team - there are genuine medal prospects, fascinating characters and electric personalities wherever you look. Has there been a Games in recent memory where Team GB looked this strong?

Once you've digested our top 10 profiles, come back and let me know if your selection would be any different. Thanks to everyone who added the weight of their opinion to the debate.

And if you're wondering what happened to our list of the top 10 international athletes - they are unveiled on Tuesday.

Ollie Williams is a BBC Sport journalist. Our FAQs should answer any questions you have.


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