I’ve seen some people say “so what” about his achievement of riding 4000 winners.
But let’s check that again. 4000 winners!
AP smiled broadly after riding Mountain Tunes to a typically gutsy McCoy victory. As has been the case so often during McCoy’s illustrious career, he looked out of the race turning into the home straight. But he drove Mountain Tunes on to win. His fellow jockeys were quick to shake the hand of a man they admire greatly.
For they know only too well that, in a sport when crashing falls and broken bones are all part of the job, McCoy’s achievement is truly magnificent.
The hardened AP of today is unrecognisable from the little lad who won for the first time, at Exeter racecourse.
As trainer Jim Bolger said of the photograph (left) that shows Jim with the young AP after that first victory: “I must have known he was good because I got my picture taken with him.”
Racing fans we can be guilty of taking excellence for granted. We know Tony McCoy is the best, so some punters, often talking through their pocket, are quick to criticise the man when a ride doesn’t go the way they, or he, hoped for.
In December 2011 I sat down with AP for a half hour chat. I have met countless top sportsmen and women in my TV career. Many have impressed me. Few impressed me as much as McCoy. Here is a man so dedicated, so focussed and so determined to ride every horse to victory that his ambition seems to possess him.
He takes his work very seriously and when this 4000 total is just another chapter in his colourful career, he will go on and on. Riding winners, sometimes displaying skills in the saddle that no other jockey could offer.
Were it up to me – and for what it’s worth – I would knight him. Not when he retires, but now! Arise Sir Tony McCoy.
AP McCoy has won races he had no right to win.
So why does he always remember the losers? The one that got away.
Want to know what makes McCoy tick?
Want to hear from the man himself about the highs and lows of his career?
Then kick off your shoes, sit back and watch my half hour interview with him in full.
Subscribe to my you tube channel here