Former Republican vice-presidental candidate Sarah Palin described herself as an ‘unconventional candidate’ when asked by the BBC about her intention of running for president next year.

In the interview, screened last night on Newsnight, Palin was approached at an Alaskan snowsled race and quizzed over whether she would soon declare her candidacy.

“Obama has already said he’s going to spend a billion dollars (£615.4m) on this race, so money is certainly going to be a consideration,” Sarah Palin said.

“And just the idea of whether the American electorate is ready for someone a bit unconventional, who is willing to tell it as she sees it, not be beholden to special interest or such obsessive partisanship as to let a political machine get in the way of doing what’s right for the voters.”

Palin, 47, also took aim at the media, some of whom have taken great delight in picking over her verbal gaffes and apparent lack of understanding of some basic elements of US politics.

“Let’s take a couple of examples – and I don’t really want to have to talk politics on one of the best days of our life here in Alaska – but I’ll give you one more answer. Things like, that are misconstrued regarding rumours out there that are still in the media because reporters don’t do their homework, too often, and they don’t set the record straight – though I think it’s their job to set the record straight – rumours like I didn’t know that Africa was a continent, that’s still out there, that’s a lie.

“Things like I censored books when I was a mayor up here in Alaska, that’s a lie … So again if I decide to run we know that we have to put up with a lot of the BS that comes from the media but …

“It’s not all of you guys but some of you still claim that Trig isn’t my kid. I think that’s an indication of screwed-up media.”