The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom or Britain, is a sovereign country in western Europe. Lying off the north-western coast of the European mainland, the United Kingdom includes the island of Great Britain, Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom that shares a land border with another sovereign state—the Republic of Ireland. The Irish Sea lies between Great Britain and Ireland, with an area of 242,500 square kilometres, the United Kingdom is the 78th-largest sovereign state in the world and the 11th-largest in Europe. It is also the 21st-most populous country, with an estimated 65.1 million inhabitants, together, this makes it the fourth-most densely populated country in the European Union. The United Kingdom is a monarchy with a parliamentary system of governance. The monarch is Queen Elizabeth II, who has reigned since 6 February 1952, other major urban areas in the United Kingdom include the regions of Birmingham, Leeds, Glasgow, Liverpool and Manchester. The United Kingdom consists of four countries—England, Scotland, Wales, the last three have devolved administrations, each with varying powers, based in their capitals, Edinburgh, Cardiff and Belfast, respectively. The relationships among the countries of the UK have changed over time, Wales was annexed by the Kingdom of England under the Laws in Wales Acts 1535 and 1542. A treaty between England and Scotland resulted in 1707 in a unified Kingdom of Great Britain, which merged in 1801 with the Kingdom of Ireland to form the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. Five-sixths of Ireland seceded from the UK in 1922, leaving the present formulation of the United Kingdom of Great Britain, there are fourteen British Overseas Territories. These are the remnants of the British Empire which, at its height in the 1920s, British influence can be observed in the language, culture and legal systems of many of its former colonies. The United Kingdom is a country and has the worlds fifth-largest economy by nominal GDP. The UK is considered to have an economy and is categorised as very high in the Human Development Index. It was the worlds first industrialised country and the worlds foremost power during the 19th, the UK remains a great power with considerable economic, cultural, military, scientific and political influence internationally. It is a nuclear weapons state and its military expenditure ranks fourth or fifth in the world. The UK has been a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council since its first session in 1946 and it has been a leading member state of the EU and its predecessor, the European Economic Community, since 1973. However, on 23 June 2016, a referendum on the UKs membership of the EU resulted in a decision to leave. The Acts of Union 1800 united the Kingdom of Great Britain, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have devolved self-government
Ireland is an island in the North Atlantic. It is separated from Great Britain to its east by the North Channel, the Irish Sea, Ireland is the second-largest island of the British Isles, the third-largest in Europe, and the twentieth-largest on Earth. Politically, Ireland is divided between the Republic of Ireland, which covers five-sixths of the island, and Northern Ireland, in 2011, the population of Ireland was about 6.4 million, ranking it the second-most populous island in Europe after Great Britain. Just under 4.6 million live in the Republic of Ireland, the islands geography comprises relatively low-lying mountains surrounding a central plain, with several navigable rivers extending inland. The island has lush vegetation, a product of its mild, thick woodlands covered the island until the Middle Ages. As of 2013, the amount of land that is wooded in Ireland is about 11% of the total, there are twenty-six extant mammal species native to Ireland. The Irish climate is moderate and classified as oceanic. As a result, winters are milder than expected for such a northerly area, however, summers are cooler than those in Continental Europe. Rainfall and cloud cover are abundant, the earliest evidence of human presence in Ireland is dated at 10,500 BC. Gaelic Ireland had emerged by the 1st century CE, the island was Christianised from the 5th century onward. Following the Norman invasion in the 12th century, England claimed sovereignty over Ireland, however, English rule did not extend over the whole island until the 16th–17th century Tudor conquest, which led to colonisation by settlers from Britain. In the 1690s, a system of Protestant English rule was designed to materially disadvantage the Catholic majority and Protestant dissenters, with the Acts of Union in 1801, Ireland became a part of the United Kingdom. Northern Ireland saw much civil unrest from the late 1960s until the 1990s and this subsided following a political agreement in 1998. In 1973 the Republic of Ireland joined the European Economic Community while the United Kingdom, Irish culture has had a significant influence on other cultures, especially in the fields of literature. Alongside mainstream Western culture, an indigenous culture exists, as expressed through Gaelic games, Irish music. The culture of the island shares many features with that of Great Britain, including the English language, and sports such as association football, rugby, horse racing. The name Ireland derives from Old Irish Eriu and this in turn derives from Proto-Celtic *Iveriu, which is also the source of Latin Hibernia. Iveriu derives from a root meaning fat, prosperous, during the last glacial period, and up until about 9000 years ago, most of Ireland was covered with ice, most of the time
Newcastle United F.C.
Newcastle United Football Club is an English professional association football club based in Newcastle upon Tyne. Following the clubs most recent relegation from the top-flight during the 2015–16 season, Newcastle returned to the Football Leagues 2nd tier, the Championship, for the 2016–17 campaign. Newcastle United was founded in 1892 by the merger of Newcastle East End and Newcastle West End, the ground was developed into an all-seater stadium in the mid-1990s and now has a capacity of 52,354. They have won four League Championship titles, six FA Cups and a Charity Shield, as well as the 1969 Inter-Cities Fairs Cup, Newcastle United has the ninth highest total of trophies won by an English club. The clubs most successful period was between 1904 and 1910, when they won an FA Cup and three of their First Division titles. The club were successful in the Premier League in the 1990s and early 2000s, but have been mostly struggling since the 2006–07 season. Newcastle has a local rivalry with Sunderland, and the two clubs have engaged in the Tyne–Wear derby since 1898. The clubs traditional kit colours are black and white striped shirts, black shorts and their traditional crest takes elements of the city coat of arms, which features two grey seahorses. The club has been owned by Mike Ashley since 2007, succeeding long term chairman, the club is the seventeenth highest revenue producing club in the world in terms of annual revenue, generating €169. 3m in 2015. Historically, Newcastles highest placing was in 1999 when they were the fifth highest revenue producing club in the world. The first record of football being played on Tyneside dates from 3 March 1877 at Elswick Rugby Club, later that year, Newcastles first football club, Tyne Association, was formed. The origins of Newcastle United Football Club itself can be traced back to the formation of a club by the Stanley Cricket Club of Byker in November 1881. This team was renamed Newcastle East End F. C. in October 1882, to avoid confusion with the club in Stanley. Rosewood F. C. of Byker merged with Newcastle East End a short time later, in 1886, Newcastle East End moved from Byker to Heaton. In August 1882, Newcastle West End F. C. formed from West End Cricket Club, and in May 1886, the two clubs became rivals in the Northern League. In 1889, Newcastle East End became a team, before becoming a limited company the following March. However, on the hand, Newcastle West End were in serious financial trouble. With only one club in the city for fans to support
West Ham United F.C.
West Ham United Football Club is a professional football club based in Stratford, East London, England. They compete in the Premier League, the top tier of English football, in 2016 the club re-located to the London Stadium. The club was founded in 1895 as Thames Ironworks and reformed in 1900 as West Ham United and they moved to the Boleyn Ground in 1904, which remained their home ground for more than a century. The team initially competed in the Southern League and Western League before joining the Football League in 1919 and they were promoted to the top flight in 1923, when they also losing finalists in the first FA Cup Final held at Wembley. In 1940, the won the inaugural Football League War Cup. West Ham have been winners of the FA Cup three times, in 1964,1975, and 1980, and have also been runners-up twice, in 1923, and 2006. The club have reached two major European finals, winning the European Cup Winners Cup in 1965 and finishing runners up in the competition in 1976. West Ham also won the Intertoto Cup in 1999 and they are one of eight clubs never to have fallen below the second tier of English football, spending 59 of 91 league seasons in the top flight, up to and including the 2016–17 season. The clubs highest league position to date came in 1985–86 when they achieved third place in the then First Division, three West Ham players were members of the 1966 World Cup final-winning England team, captain Bobby Moore and goalscorers Geoff Hurst and Martin Peters. The club, Thames Ironworks were the first ever winners of the West Ham Charity Cup in 1895 contested by clubs in the West Ham locality and they turned professional in 1898 upon entering the Southern League Second Division, and were promoted to the First Division at the first attempt. The following year they came second from bottom, but had established themselves as a fully fledged competitive team and they comfortably fended off the challenge of local rivals Fulham in a relegation play-off, 5–1 in late April 1900 and retained their First Division status. In 1899, they acquired their now-traditional home kit combination of claret shirts and sky blue sleeves in a wager involving Aston Villa players, because of the original works team roots and links, they are still known as the Irons or the Hammers amongst fans and the media. West Ham Utd joined the Western League for the 1901 season while continuing to play in the Southern Division 1. In 1907, West Ham were crowned the Western League Division 1B Champions, the reborn club continued to play their games at the Memorial Grounds in Plaistow but moved to a pitch in the Upton Park area in the guise of the Boleyn Ground stadium in 1904. The Cup Final match itself ended 2–0 to Bolton, the team enjoyed mixed success in Division 1 but retained their status for ten years and reached the FA Cup semi-final in 1933. In 1932, the club was relegated to Division Two and long term custodian Syd King was sacked after serving the club in the role of manager for 32 years, following relegation, King had mental health problems. He appeared drunk at a meeting and soon after committed suicide. The club spent most of the next 30 years in division, first under Paynter
Ronald Antonio OSullivan, OBE is an English professional snooker and pool player. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest players in the sports history and he is noted for his rapid playing style, mercurial temperament, and his ambivalent relationship with the sport, from which he has taken prolonged sabbaticals and repeatedly threatened to retire. Ronnie is based at the Legends Snooker Academy in Leytonstone, England, a childhood snooker prodigy, OSullivan made his first century break at age 10, and his first maximum break at age 15. He turned professional in 1992, at the age of 16 and he is also the youngest player to have won the Masters, having captured his first title in 1995 at the age of 19 years and 69 days. His record in Triple Crown events now stands at five World Championship, a record seven Masters, OSullivan has held the world number one ranking on multiple occasions, most recently during the 2009/2010 season. His other achievements include ten Premier League titles and winning the Nations Cup with England in 2000, known as a prolific break-builder, OSullivan holds the record for the most competitive century breaks with 868. OSullivans achievements in snooker began at an early age and he made his first century break at the age of 10, completed his first total clearance at age 12, and became British Under-16 Champion at age 13. He made his debut in The Thames Snooker Classic when he was 14. He compiled his first maximum break in the final of the 1991 British Amateur Championships at age 15 and he turned professional in 1992, aged 16. OSullivan began the 1992/1993 season by winning 74 of his first 76 professional matches, including a streak of 38 successive victories. At the qualifying stage of the Grand Prix he defeated Jason Curtis 5–0 in a time of 43 minutes 36 seconds, after this Alan Hughes gave him the nickname The Rocket. In September 1992, at the age of 16, he became the youngest player ever to qualify for the World Championship. He made his Crucible debut on 18 April 1993 at the age of 17 years and 134 days and he lost 7–10 to Alan McManus in the first round. OSullivan was named the WPBSAs Young Player of the Year for 1993, in the 1993/1994 season OSullivan defeated Hendry 10–6 in the final of the UK Championship to win his first ranking title. At the age of 17 years and 358 days he became the youngest ever winner of a ranking tournament. He faced Hendry again in the final of the European Open and he won his second ranking title at the British Open by defeating James Wattana 9–4 in the final. He reached the round of the World Championship but lost 3–13 against John Parrott. Having started the season ranked number 57 in the world, he ended it ranked number 9 and he captured his first Masters title by defeating John Higgins 9–3 in the final, becoming the youngest player ever to win the tournament at the age of 19 years and 69 days
24 Hours of Le Mans
The 24 Hours of Le Mans is the worlds oldest active sports car race in endurance racing, held annually since 1923 near the town of Le Mans, France. It is one of the most prestigious races in the world and is often called the Grand Prix of Endurance. The event represents one leg of the Triple Crown of Motorsport, other events being the Indianapolis 500, since 2012, the 24 Hours of Le Mans has been a part of the FIA World Endurance Championship. In 2017, it will be the round of the season. The race has over the years inspired imitating races all over the globe, popularizing the 24-hour format at places like Daytona, Nürburgring, Spa-Francorchamps, and Bathurst. The American Le Mans Series and Europes Le Mans Series of multi-event sports car championships were spun off from 24 Hours of Le Mans regulations. At a time when Grand Prix motor racing was the dominant form of motorsport throughout Europe, Le Mans was designed to present a different test. Instead of focusing on the ability of a car company to build the fastest machines and this encouraged innovation in producing reliable and fuel-efficient vehicles, because endurance racing requires cars that last and spend as little time in the pits as possible. At the same time, the layout of the track necessitated cars with better aerodynamics, while this was shared with Grand Prix racing, few tracks in Europe had straights of a length comparable to the Mulsanne. Additionally, because the road is public and thus not as meticulously maintained as permanent racing circuits, racing puts more strain on the parts, increasing the importance of reliability. The oil crisis in the early 1970s led organizers to adopt a fuel economy formula known as Group C that limited the amount of each car was allowed. Although it was abandoned, fuel economy remains important as new fuel sources reduced time spent during pit stops. Such technological innovations have had an effect and can be incorporated into consumer cars. This has also led to faster and more exotic supercars as manufacturers seek to develop road cars in order to develop them into even faster GT cars. Additionally, in recent years hybrid systems have been championed in the LMP category as rules have changed to their benefit. The race is held in June, leading at times to very hot conditions for drivers, particularly in closed vehicles with poor ventilation, the race begins in mid-afternoon and finishes the following day at the same hour the race started the previous day. Over the 24 hours, modern competitors often cover distances well over 5,000 km, the record is 2010s 5,410 km, six times the length of the Indianapolis 500, or approximately 18 times longer than a Formula One Grand Prix. Drivers and racing teams strive for speed and avoiding damage, as well as managing the cars consumables, primarily fuel, tires