'AP stands for always perfect': Martin Pipe pays tribute to Tony McCoy
Thursday 07 November 2013
Up to 5,000 racegoers made the most of the free admission which is granted at Towcester, the only course to provide that concession, and watched history being made in the autumn sunshine as Tony McCoy celebrated his 4,000th win. "There's been a great buzz here today," said Robert Bellamy, clerk of the course.
The champion's champagne had been on ice since Monday and McCoy's wife, Chanelle, revealed that plans for a celebration at her husband's pub in Marlborough had had to be put on hold. "We've been trying to book a DJ but it was difficult, not knowing what night to book," she said, adding that McCoy's daughter Eve will reap the rewards when she holds her own party today to celebrate her sixth birthday. "Daddy promised Eve an extra present when he got his 4,000th winner," she said.
The world of racing paid homage to the 39-year-old Northern Irishman. Richard Johnson, the jump jockey next on the winner list behind McCoy on a remote 2,567, said: "He doesn't relent at all. He's as keen now as he was when he first came over from Ireland. What he has achieved in the last 15 to 20 years is incredible. He has changed riding, especially in the National Hunt field, and moved it forward."
Martin Pipe, the trainer with whom McCoy forged a prolific partnership, said: "I'm sure he rode over 1,000 winners for me. It's absolutely amazing. AP is just absolutely phenomenal. Always Perfect – his two initials. He's absolutely incredible.
"Not only is he a great friend, he's a brilliant jockey and a brilliant role model for the young jockeys to follow."
Effusive tributes also came from outside racing, notably from those sportsmen intimately connected with horses either through ownership or flutters: footballers.
McCoy is a lifelong Arsenal fan and he received a special commendation from a more erudite source, Gunners manager Arsène Wenger: "He has been at the top of his sport for a very long time – as long as I have been manager of Arsenal Football Club – and that shows fantastic consistency. He has come through a lot of injuries, and has shown great resilience to get to where he is."
Latest in Sport
Paul Scholes: Emirates was the easy option for Mesut Özil. He needs a leader - and Arsenal don't have them
Gareth Bale reveals the two things he hates about Real Madrid: 'Getting nutmegged and Spanish spiders'
Frank Warren column: Amir Khan ready to meet winner of Floyd Mayweather v Manny Pacquiao
Cristiano Ronaldo shows off his dance moves, including the moonwalk
Terminally-ill Club Brugge fan Lorenzo Schoonbaert delays euthanasia appointment to see his beloved football club 'win one last time'
Durham Free School: 'Creationism taught at' free school facing closure
Nearly 100,000 of Britain's poorest children go hungry after parents' benefits are cut
End of the licence fee: BBC to back radical overhaul of how it is funded
Nigel Farage promises Ukip will not 'stigmatise' would-be migrants – and says he wants 'everyone to speak the same language'
Ex-head of MI6: 'We shouldn't kid ourselves that Russia is on a path to democracy'
Most people think legal tax avoidance is just as wrong as illegal tax evasion, poll suggests
£16000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They are an award-winning digit...
£45000 - £55000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Senior VMware Platform En...
£10000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A distributor of specialist ele...
£17000 - £19000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A distributor of specialist ele...