Sporting Life (British newspaper)

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Sporting Life
Owner(s)Hestview Ltd
HeadquartersLeeds, England,
United Kingdom

The Sporting Life was a British newspaper published from 1859 until 1998, best known for its coverage of horse racing and greyhound racing.[1] Latterly it has continued as a multi-sports website.

Priced at one penny, the Sporting Life initially appeared twice weekly, on Wednesdays and Saturdays. It became a daily newspaper in 1883, and in 1886 acquired its rival, Bell's Life in London.[1] In 1924 the newspaper sponsored the 1924 Women's Olympiad held at Stamford Bridge in London. The paper continued publication until its merger with the Racing Post in May 1998; a proposed relaunch was aborted in 1999.[2]

On 20 December 1996, before the newspaper arm closed, Sporting Life launched an online version of the paper, The site was run as a joint venture between Trinity Mirror and the Press Association until PA Sporting Life Ltd was sold to 365 Media Group[1] (then known as ukbetting plc, now a division of British Sky Broadcasting) on 14 October 2001.

In February 1998 the newspaper lost a High Court libel action brought by racehorse owners Jack and Linda Ramsden and jockey Kieren Fallon.[3]

The Sporting Life was said to be the late Queen Mother's favourite newspaper. The eccentric racing pundit John McCririck was a journalist on the paper and later wrote a column for the website. In the popular television series Agatha Christie's Poirot, it was shown to be a paper read by Poirot's associate Captain Hastings.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Brake & Demoor 2009, p. 594
  2. ^ Reid, Jamie (5 March 1999), "The murder of this Sporting Life", The Guardian, retrieved 9 October 2012
  3. ^ "Racing: Champion jockey wins libel case". The Independent. 27 February 1998. Archived from the original on 24 May 2022. Retrieved 25 June 2020.
  4. ^ Poirot: season 3 episode 9 (48:50)


  • Brake, Laurel; Demoor, Marysa, eds. (2009), "Sporting Life (1859–1998)", Dictionary of Nineteenth-Century Journalism, Academia Press, ISBN 978-90-382-1340-8

Further reading[edit]