Lewis Hamilton’s one-off crash helmet for Sunday’s Monaco Grand Prix has courted plenty of attention so far this week.
But the Mercedes driver won’t be the only Formula One star lining up on the Monte Carlo grid with a different lid this weekend.
A host of drivers have unveiled new helmets for the blue-riband event, with treble world champion Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari star Fernando Alonso and this year’s Australian Grand Prix winner Kimi Raikkonen also getting in on the act.
Lifting the lid: Lewis Hamilton’s helmet features girlfriend Nicole Scherzinger and his pet dog Roscoe Vettel has offered a racy design in both senses of the word featuring a bikini-clad blonde on the back of his lid before honouring Sir Stirling Moss’s famous 1961 victory around the Principality on top.
Raikkonen meanwhile pays homage to 1976 world champion James Hunt for the second successive year with his creative design, while Alonso credits each of his 32 grand prix victories in a puzzle design.
British driver Paul Di Resta, Raikkonen’s Lotus team-mate Romain Grosjean, and Toro Rosso star Jean-Eric Vergne are also sporting specially-designed helmets this weekend.
Blonde ambition: Sebastian Vettel sums up the glitz of Monaco (above) before paying homage to Sir Stirling Moss’s spectacular 1961 drive (below) Speaking about his one-off lid which features girlfriend Nicole Scherzinger and pet dog Rosce, Hamilton said: ‘People might not know, but F1 drivers have new helmets made throughout the season.’ Writing in his column for the BBC, the 28-year-old added, who is among the favourites this weekend despite his poor showing last time out in Spain, added: ‘I like to do something special with my helmet design for Monaco.
It has got me, Nicole and my dog Roscoe cruising in an old convertible.
‘A guy called Jason at JLF Designs has been doing my designs since I was in karts.
We come up with lots of different concepts.
This year I took an idea from the guy who did one of my tattoos.
Puzzle: Fernando Alonso has listed each of his 32 wins on his lid for this weekend’s Monaco Grand Prix ‘He painted an ice cream truck with a design depicting life on the streets in candy apple red, which is one of my favourite colours.
‘So from that idea I thought: “Let’s do the streets of Monaco.” It is also my five-year anniversary with Nicole this weekend.
She’s here for the race and I wanted to do something special for her.
‘So he has airbrushed that idea and the helmet has got me, Nicole and my dog Roscoe cruising in an old convertible.’ Crash helmet: Lotus drivers Kimi Raikkonen (above) and Romain Grosjean below are sporting one-off lids Feel the Force: Paul Di Resta has incorporated a casino theme to his crash helmet for this weekend’s race
Petr Cech is good with his hands – he’s proved that in the Premier League during the past nine years.
Nevertheless you might be surprised to discover that he can play the drums.
Perhaps he’s not quite as proficient as Matt Cameron – the drummer of rock band Soundgarden that he watched on Tuesday night – but practice makes perfect.
Handy: Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech plays the drums in the team’s dining room at their hotel in St Louis Cech made the most of the club’s post-season tour in America by watching the alternative act in St Louis at The Pageant.
Chelsea’s Czech goalkeeper, who turned 31 earlier this week, has been learning how to play the drums in recent years.
He previously said: ‘It is a great way of relaxing.
To learn a U2 song after a month is an extraordinary feeling.’ Here to stay: Cech has been at Chelsea for nine years.
He was signed by Claudio Ranieri but only moved in the summer Jose Mourinho arrived Scenic: Chelsea train at the Busch Stadium in St Louis, where more than 10,000 fans turned out to watch VIEWING OPTIONS Fri May 24: Chelsea v Man City (KO 1.30am UK, 7.30pm Thursday US) Sat May 25: Chelsea v Man City (KO 10.30pm UK, 5.30pm US) Live on Chelsea TV (free for these games) When at Euro 2012 with his country he even joined forces with Arsenal midfielder Tomas Rosicky, who plays the guitar.
And Cech wasn’t the only player enjoying the trip – which some regard as a step too far for the squad that has already played 69 games this season.
David Luiz was one of many players happy to spend time posing for pictures with fans and signing autographs as Chelsea held an open training session.
Over 10,000 fans turned up to watch the team prepare for their first clash with Man City (1.30am Friday UK time) at the Busch Stadium, home of the St Louis Cardinals baseball team.
Popular: David Luiz poses with a fan and makes a silly face.
He could become the next captain at Chelsea and is widely liked by fans and colleagues Home from home: Luiz always encounters people with crazy hair (often wigs) trying to emulate him at Stamford Bridge and St Louis didn’t disappoint The Brazilian – touted to become a future captain of the club – was hailed by the spectators who saw Rafael Benitez hold a training match on a reduced-size pitch.
Supporters were shown a video montage of the 2012 Champions League triumph before players signed autographs and went on a lap of appreciation.
Five players went head-to-head in a crossbar challenge at the end – Luiz, Cech, young defender Andreas Christensen, Demba Ba and Gary Cahill – with the latter emering the winner.
The trip was a good experience for the younger players brought along – Nathan Ake and Ruben Loftus-Cheek both tweeted about how much they were enjoying themselves.
Young gun: Ruben Loftus-Cheek (centre) is one of a few youngsters that have been brought on the trip to the States Double Champions: Chelsea hold both the Europa League and Champions League until Saturday night Blue skies ahead: Chelsea must play just twice more – against Man City – and then their players can have a well-deserved rest Big hand: Chelsea players walk on a lap of appreciation around the Busch Stadium.
The match sold out within 20 minutes of tickets going on sale Benitez is taking charge of these two matches but the interim manager will be leaving at the end of May.
In line to replace him is Jose Mourinho, who was hailed by Juan Mata.
‘Jose is one of the best,’ said the Spanish play-maker.
‘He won everything in every country he was – in Portugal, in Italy, in London with Chelsea, and in Spain as well.
‘We don’t know really what is going to happen but if he comes he is welcome because he is one of the best and Chelsea always want to be a top side.
If he comes we are going to be happy to have him.
‘What I know is that Madrid is a massive club with a lot of pressure on them, and it shouldn’t be easy to be manager of Real Madrid.
‘If he comes we will try and do our best with him, or whoever, to win the title, because one challenge for me will be to win the Premier League.’ Goodbye wave: Fernando Torres has been linked with a move away from Stamford Bridge…
will the new boss want to persevere with him? Looking forward: Juan Mata signs autographs for supporters.
The playmaker hailed Jose Mourinho and said he was one of the best managers in the world
Cliff Lee: Impressive game shutout Cliff Lee hurled a complete-game shutout to help the Philadelphia Phillies beat the Miami Marlins 3-0.
Lee allowed three hits, striking out five and walking two for the 12th shutout of his career, while also claiming two hits of his own.
Delmon Young homered for the second straight night and scored twice, while Domonic Brown and Freddy Galvis each drove in a run.
Francisco Liriano pitched seven scoreless frames as the Pittsburgh Pirates edged out the Chicago Cubs 1-0.
Liriano allowed two hits, fanning nine and walking one, for his third win of the season having made his debut just two weeks ago.
Garrett Jones drove in Andrew McCutchen in the first for the game’s only run.
Jose Bautista had four hits, homering twice and driving in all of Toronto’s runs as the Blue Jays beat the Tampa Bay Rays 4-3 in 10 innings.
Bautista’s ninth-inning solo shot, his second of the night, sent the game into extras, then he gave the Jays a walk-off win by singling in Colby Rasmus with two outs in the bottom of the 10th Clay Buchholz threw seven innings of one-run ball as he improved his record to 7-0 in the Boston Red Sox’s 6-2 win over the Chicago White Sox.
Buchholz allowed five hits as he lowered his American League-leading ERA to 1.73, while David Ortiz and Daniel Nava each drove in a pair.
Grand slam Rookie Evan Gattis hit his first grand slam as the Atlanta Braves beat the Minnesota Twins 8-3.
The Braves, who won their sixth straight, also got homers from BJ Upton and Ramiro Pena.
Ramon Hernandez homered as the Los Angeles Dodgers responded to coach Don Mattingly’s criticisms with a 9-2 win over the Milwaukee Brewers.
Mattingly dropped Andre Ethier after questioning his side’s attitude, and it paid off his replacement Scott Van Slyke drove in two on a pair of hits.
Bryce Harper homered in the sixth and scored in the 10th as the Washington Nationals beat the San Francisco Giants 2-1.
Chris Davis crushed his American League-leading 14th homer as part of a four-hit night in the the Baltimore Orioles’ 6-3 win over the New York Yankees.
David Murphy and Adrian Beltre both homered as the Texas Rangers got all their runs on the board in the first inning in a 3-1 victory over the Oakland Athletics.
CJ Wilson pitched eight innings of one-run ball, striking out 10, as the Los Angeles Angels beat the Seattle Mariners 7-1.
Miguel Cabrera homered for the 13th time this season and drove in three as the Detroit Tigers beat the Cleveland Inndians 11-7, while Carlos Gonzalez went yard in the Colorado Rockies’ 4-1 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks.
The Cincinnati Reds beat the New York Mets 7-4 to complete a three-game sweep, the Houston Astros saw off the Kansas City Royals 3-1 and the St Louis Cardinals were 5-3 winners over the San Diego Padres.
Throughout much of the 1980s Australian cricket was a mess, the national team cast about on the winds of rebellion, hamstrung by retirements and peppered by regular defeat.
Yet in the 1990s the Baggy Green side was one of the greatest the sport has seen.
A generation of England fans grew up knowing the Australian side only as an all-conquering force, one who would habitually humiliate whichever side England sacrificially put out to take them on.
The pivot between the old, shambolic and (crucially) Ashes-losing Australia of the 1980s and the new, terrifying Pommie-pounding Australia of the 1990s came in the Ashes series of 1989.
And perhaps the simplest way to encapsulate the spirit of that summer is with two bottles of champagne and a glass of water.
First, the bubbly.
Terry Alderman, written off before the series as over-the-hill, a 30-something whose potency had been eroded by years of injury, a has-been that never really was, confounded the critics with match figures of 10 for 151 as Australia tore England apart in the first Test at Headingley.
The bowler whose swing swung the game in the tourists’ favour pipped Steve Waugh and Mark Taylor to the man-of-the-match award, accepted his magnum of champagne, then ordered it to be put on ice until the Ashes were back in Australian hands.
That was the first bottle in our tale.
The second makes its appearance in the hands of a waiter at lunch on the second day of the fifth Test.
Taylor and Geoff Marsh had batted through the entire opening day, Australia, 3-0 up with two games to play, the Ashes already heading back down under, were 370 for one, well on their way to amassing 400 plus in their first innings for the fifth time in five matches.
Marsh had at last been dismissed for 138 in the morning session and, “to celebrate”, the England captain David Gower ordered himself a glass of the good stuff.
If it was meant to be a self-deprecating attempt at light humour in the face of a crisis, it came across as a gesture of utter demoralisation, a sign of England’s all-too-obvious inadequacies and impotence in the face of a Baggy Green steamroller.
And, coupled with Alderman’s magnum, it showcased the contrast in attitude between the sides one shrugging its shoulders, one ruthlessly hell-bent on victory.
Which brings us on to that glass of water.
Later in that Test, during England’s doomed attempt to avoid the follow on, Robin Smith, arguably the only England player to come out of the series with any credit, asked the Australian captain if he might have a glass of water.
“No you fucking can’t, what do you think this is a fucking tea party?” came the unequivocal response from Allan Border.
This was a new Australia and a new Border.
No more Mr Nice Guy.
The seeds of the new era were sown in the Ashes series of 1985, one that for Australia had been preceded, in Border’s words, by “a monumental shit fight” following defections from the squad for a rebel tour of South Africa “I was a very unhappy captain, and I clearly had a very unhappy team on my hands.” Border’s team, defending the urn won back in 1982-83 by Greg Chappell, lost 3-1 to Gower’s England, but the atmosphere was convivial there’s an illustrative photograph in Border’s autobiography of the two captains at the end of a day’s play during that tour, Border clasping his opposite number in a handshake with one arm, the other draped chummily across Gower’s shoulders, smiles all round.
It was too convivial for some.
“AB, these blokes are belting the hell out of you,” Ian Chappell told the Australian captain, “but you’re out there being their best mate, for Christ’s sake.” Border would remember those words, and act accordingly, on his next visit to England.
Even fresher in Australian minds was the chastening beating they suffered on home soil at the hands of the West Indies in 1988-89.
“We got beaten by the West Indies in the Boxing Day Test they smashed us up and embarrassed us and we made a pact afterwards it would never happen again,” said Dean Jones, the Australian No5.
“That was the biggest turning point we’ve had in Australia.
Everything changed for us.
AB and all the players were harder on ourselves.” The tourists disembarked from 26 hours in business class (the first time an Australian side had not flown economy to England “‘Aussies mean business’ had a nice ring to it,” reckoned Border) to be greeted by the usual “worst touring side ever” headlines.
There was no doubt the home side expected to win.
Gower had announced himself “supremely confident” of not just retaining the Ashes but beating the Australians on his reappointment as captain in April.
If the confidence of the England side and media looks ludicrous in hindsight and in poring over the faults of the visitors they entirely overlooked the weaknesses in their own side it’s worth remembering that since winning the second Ashes Test at Lord’s on 27 June, 1985, Australia had won only five of 34 Tests, and of the 13 Tests played away from home in that period they had won none.
In the 1980s up to that point they had won just one series on foreign soil and that a one-match affair in Sri Lanka and they had won only three series anywhere since 1983.
The future greats in the side Taylor, Waugh, Healy were yet to reveal their greatness.
They even lost their opening three-day match of the tour in a low-scoring game against Worcestershire then drew against Somerset in the next.
Yet even during those games Border had a new demeanour.
He had always been a rugged character, a battler, but this was a new, harder edge he refused to talk to the opposition, and demanded complete discipline and commitment from his team in the field.
And from England’s point of view, the counties made the mistake of throwing fuel on the fire.
In 1985 Border had complained about county sides fielding below-strength lineups in tour matches, so in 1989 counties were offered cash prizes a share of 25,000 for wins over the tourists, in a rather ill-thought-out attempt to ensure competitive matches.
It certainly did that but a side-effect was that county sides tended to prepare result pitches.
Fiery, bouncy, mind-your-head pitches.
In the final tour match before the first Test, against Derbyshire who fielded Devon Malcolm and a young West Indian named Ian Bishop the Australian batting lineup were peppered with short deliveries.
Fuelled by the cold pizza served up for lunch, they were bowled out for 200 in their first innings, 180 in the second and scraped home by 11 runs .
That experience was the final straw.
In the first Test Australia would be determined to, in Border’s words, “show the bastards”.
And show them they did.
At Headingley, scene of Border’s lowest point in 1981, Gower won the toss (at which the Australia captain did not speak to his counterpart) and put the tourists in.
Taylor smashed his first Test century, Waugh did likewise, Australia declared at 601 for seven and despite England avoiding the follow-on, Alderman bowled the tourists to victory in the fourth innings.
The champagne went on ice.
After another game of what Border described as “bounce the Aussie” against a Lancashire attack including Wasim Akram and Patrick Patterson, Waugh made an unbeaten 152 in the first innings at Lord’s, Merv Hughes was warned for intimidatory bowling and an Australian side went two up after two Tests in England for the first time since Donald Bradman’s side in 1948.
Two moments at HQ again illustrate Australia’s new-found focus.
Border points to the incident when he swiped at and missed a triple-bounce ball from Neil Foster.
England were tickled, the Australian captain furious: “Maybe in 1985 I’d have responded to such an incident, and their joking, with a bit of light-hearted banter of my own.” This time around there was just naked rage.
After the match the Australian camp received a telegram from the makers of the Crocodile Dundee films: “The party is on us.
When and where do you want it?” Again it was decided to wait until after the Ashes were secure.
For the third Test at Edgbaston England recalled Ian Botham, despite the fact that he had neither scored a first-class fifty nor taken five wickets in an innings for two years, and rain came to the rescue.
But at Old Trafford in the fourth Test (ahead of which England were rocked by the announcement of a rebel squad to tour South Africa) there was no escape from the throttling, aggressive fields, disciplined bowling and belligerent dismantling of the England attack.
Three-nil, the Ashes back in Australian hands, but the relentless tourists and their captain were not yet satisfied.
“We had some unfinished business: we wanted to win the series 5-0, the greatest winning margin by an Australian team.
We had a team meeting at which the feeling was very much: ‘Let’s go for the jugular.’” At Trent Bridge Taylor and Marsh did not just go for the jugular they ripped it out and made balloon animals with it.
The first day ended with Australia 301 without loss, the opening pair becoming the first players to bat through an entire day’s play in a Test in England and only the third openers to do so anywhere.
The home side by this stage were in disarray Australia won by an innings and 180 runs.
The ordeal was nearly over for Gower and England.
On the opening morning of the sixth Test Border was asked if he would like England to up their game a little, just to try his side’s mettle, to see how his youngsters responded to pressure.
“Nope,” came the reply.
England, who with their team selection took the number of players used during the series to 29 (Australian, in contrast, used 12), escaped with a rain-affected draw after Border, ruthless to the end, had delayed a declaration on the final day.
An earlier end to the Australian innings “would have given England a sniff of victory and I had no intention of doing that”.
The demolition work was complete, England reduced to rubble.
Australia, 4-0 winners for the first time since 1948, had their party courtesy of Crocodile Dundee’s box-office takings, flew home for ticker-tape parades and prepared for a new era of hard-nosed dominance.
England hunkered down for a rebuilding job that would take a decade.
That was definitely no tea party.
Thu, May 23, 2013 | 01:17 BST
Microsoft has registered domain names for the new Kinect hardware, which will come bundled with the console, called Kinect One as well as what is likely to be a new Kinect-based fitness game for the new console, called Xbox Fitness.
With Microsoft having announced 15 exclusive games for Xbox One in its first year, we can t help but wonder if one of them will be Xbox Fitness.
Perhaps E3 will tell.
Cristiano Ronaldo and Jose Mourinho handed two-match Spanish Cup bans after seeing red in Copa del Rey final
Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo and Jose Mourinho have been handed two-match Spanish Cup bans for their roles in the ugly scenes at the end of the 2-1 Copa del Rey final defeat to Atletico.
Coach Mourinho was sent to the stands arguing with officials about a decision, although the 50-year-old is highly unlikely to serve the ban after the announcement of his departure from Real.
Real’s talisman Ronaldo saw red late on for aiming a kick at the face of Atletico skipper Gabi.
Off you go: Jose Mourinho is told to leave his technical area by referee Clos Gomez in the Copa del Re final Look of innocence: Cristiano Ronaldo was sent off late in the game for kicking out at Atletico Madrid midfielder Gabi The 28-year-old received a one-match ban for violent conduct and another for accumulation of cards as he had been booked earlier in the game.
Both will be available for Real’s final two La Liga matches of the season – away at Real Sociedad on Sunday and the home game with Osasuna the following weekend – as the bans only apply to domestic cup competitions Equaliser: Atletico celebrate their opening goal in the Copa del Rey final against Real Success: Atletico captain Gabi celebrates by lifting the King’s Cup after their Copa dey Rey final win Ronaldo had put Real in front, his 55th goal for the Bernabeu oufit, but Atletico stormed back to win the match thanks to Diego Costa and Joao Miranda’s extra-time strike.
The defeat to their city rivals means Real finish the season without a trophy, while Mourinho’s exit from the club was confirmed on Monday.
Manchester City launched their new Nike kit at the same time as a record-breaking deal with the New York Yankees, and their players took advantage of being paraded in the Big Apple to get stuck in to the nightlife.
Wearing a trendy pair of galsses, gaolkeeper Joe Hart led the charge to trendy New York nightspot the Greenhouse.
City’s post-season tour sees them take on Chelsea on Thursday – early Friday morning UK time – in St Louis before travelling back to New York to play them again on Saturday.
Scroll down for video Out on the town: Joe Hart and Dedryck Boyata lead the group of City players on their night out Entry: City’s players waited outside to get into the Greenhouse nightclub Specs appeal: City and England stars Jack Rodwell (left) and keeper Hart on their night out in New York The Premier League runners-up’s deal with baseball team the Yankees will see the two sides join forces to spawn an MLS franchise in the city – New York City Football Club, who will compete from the 2015 season.
City then announced the new club’s director would be Claudio Reyna, a former midfielder with the Manchester outfit and a star of the USA team.
The kit launch saw City officially launched their new 72million kit deal with American sportswear giant Nike and revealed next season’s home strip.
City announced last year they would switch brand from Umbro, previously owned by Nike, after agreeing a deal worth 12m per year over six years.
The agreement underlines City’s determination to grow their commercial income in the upcoming era of financial fair play.
Safety first: City stars larked about at the New York Fire Department before launching the new kit (below) Keeping up appearances: James Milner juggles a ball while modelling the new Manchester City kit
Wednesday, May 22, 2013
This is a quick clip of a must see (and hear!) tackle from the USA Rugby Playsoffs recently, in a game between New Orleans and PAC. The hit itself was so solid that the sound could be heard from the stands. Not bad considering that there was no referee microphone.
You’ll notice a call for a yellow card.
We can assume that it was because the guy felt that the tackler wasn’t back 10 from the quick tap, and not because he thought that the tackle was illegal.
Huge hit, and worth sharing for the sound effect alone.
Time: 0:13Credit: busbeepbeep
A juvenile fox takes advantage of a golf ball coming his way.
This hazard wasn’t explained back at the club house.
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Real Madrid president Florentino P rez tells Spanish media that manager Jos Mourinho will be allowed to leave the club, paving the way for him to make a return to Chelsea.
P rez says Real Madrid approached Paris Saint-Germain to enquire about Carlo Ancelotti, who requested to leave the French side, but were told he was not available Source: Reuters Length: 58 sec Tuesday 21 May 2013