BBC Sports Personality of the Year 2017: Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill gets Lifetime Achievement award

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Ennis-Hill wins lifetime achievement award
BBC Sports Personality of the Year 2017
Date: Sunday, 17 December Time: 18:45 GMT Venue: Echo Arena, Liverpool Coverage: BBC One, Radio 5 live, BBC Sport website

Former heptathlon champion Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill was honoured with the Lifetime Achievement award at the BBC's Sports Personality show.

The 31-year-old won Olympic gold at London 2012 and a silver at the Rio Games four years later.

She retired in October 2016 as one of Britain's most successful athletes.

Ennis-Hill was awarded her third World Championship gold earlier this year after Russia's Tatyana Chernova was stripped of the 2011 title for doping.

With the BBC award, she follows in the footsteps of previous winners including footballer Pele and rower Sir Steve Redgrave.

"I am completely overwhelmed," said Ennis-Hill. "To be in this room full of so many legends is unbelievable.

"When I first stepped on to the track it was by chance - my mum joked about it being cheap childcare. From that moment on I fell in love with the sport and would never have imagined the career I have had.

"I just couldn't be happier and I am so proud."

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How Ennis-Hill inspired a nation

From 'Super Saturday' to the 'mother of all comebacks'

Ennis-Hill's heptathlon gold was one of the iconic moments of London 2012's 'Super Saturday'.

She had her first child, Reggie, in 2014 and won a second world title just 13 months later.

Headline writers called it "the mother of all comebacks" as she triumphed in the gruelling event which consists of the 100m hurdles, high jump, shot put, 200m, long jump, javelin throw and 800m.

The Sheffield-born athlete just missed out on retaining her Olympic title in Rio by 35 points to Belgium's Nafissatou Thiam.

After retirement, Ennis-Hill was made a dame for services to athletics.

"I've always said I want to leave my sport on a high and have no regrets, and I can truly say that," she said.

She was presented with her 2011 gold medal at this summer's World Athletics Championships in London, and gave birth to a second child, Olivia, in September.

Ennis-Hill major medals

  • Olympic Games - Gold (London 2012), silver (Rio 2016)
  • World Championships - Gold (Berlin 2009, Daegu 2011, Beijing 2015)
  • Commonwealth Games - Bronze (Melbourne, 2006)
  • European Championships - Gold (Barcelona, 2010)
Recent BBC Lifetime Achievement award winners
2016: Michael Phelps (swimming)2013: Sir Alex Ferguson (football)
2015: Sir Anthony McCoy (horse racing)2012: Lord Coe (athletics)
2014: Sir Chris Hoy (cycling)2011: Sir Steve Redgrave (rowing)