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BBC Sports Awards sees glittering red carpet line-up with One Direction's Horan, Jessica Ennis-Hill and Rory McIroy among galaxy of stars

Some of Britain's leading medal hopes at next year's Olympic Games have led a star-studded parade down the red carpet ahead of the BBC's Sports Personality of the Year show.

Jessica Ennis-HiIl glittered in a patterned dress while Andy Murray looked dapper in a navy blue suit.

Golfer Rory McIlroy and his pal One Direction's Niall Horan even put in an appearance, and Paula Radcliffe posed for banks of cameras

After a year of effort, it was glamour and sequins for the cream of British sporting talent gathered at a pre-awards ceremony reception at the Titanic Belfast visitor centre.

Nominee Ennis-Hill said: "Success takes time and I have been doing athletics for a long time, and it has taken a lot of hours a lot of hard work and focus and drive."

While the athletes let their hair down for a night of glamour, there were also tales of courage and comebacks.

One of Britain's leading Olympic medal hopes has said she was worried a crash would put her out of next year's competition.

World race cycling champion Lizzie Armitstead, 26, was another of the nominees.

She triumphed in the US by the narrowest of margins and bounced back from a crash to win further titles during a year of highs and lows.

She said: "Becoming world champion, it was a dream come true, something I have worked very hard for, the icing on the cake.

"The accident was obviously tough, at the time I was worried about Rio, I was worried about my career, but quickly turned around my health, was looked after by the best and got back on and carried on riding."

Armitstead wore a flowing blue and red number as she posed on the carpet.

A grinning Horan in a black suit and yellow tie posed for photographs with McIlroy on the red carpet.

The awards ceremony was held in the same SSE Arena in which One Direction cancelled a concert in Belfast earlier this year to the anguish of their legions of teenage fans.

Athlete Rebecca Adlington wore a daring black lace dress while tennis star Andy Murray, in dark suit and red tie, was accompanied by members of the British Davis Cup team.

Nominee Kevin Sinfield, who finished his rugby league career on a high, featuring in Leeds Rhinos' treble-securing Super League Grand Final win against Wigan, took to the carpet with his team-mates.

Twenty-time champion jump jockey AP McCoy, who retired earlier this year, was given a lifetime achievement award.

The Northern Irishman said: "I am very lucky tonight to be receiving the lifetime achievement award.

"I look at the names on the trophy, previous winners, the likes of Pele, Seve Ballesteros, Sir Alex Ferguson, global sports stars, and I think that speaks for itself.

"SPOTY is a big thing, if someone is lucky enough to win the SPOTY, it is really 12 months of hard work and being successful, and whoever wins it thoroughly deserves it."

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