Champion McCoy turns Journeyman

In the eyes of the public, there could hardly be a less appropriately named mount for the newly crowned Sports Personality of the Year as he gets back to the day job he so loves. In stark contrast to Sunday night's glittering suited and booted occasion at the NEC, AP McCoy's arena this afternoon is Kempton, a functional racetrack built on a former gravel pit in the London suburb. And his first scheduled ride is on an as yet undistinguished gelding named Journeyman.

The 15-times champion is delighted to be back in action, as will his weighing-room colleagues, even if it is on a card restricted to bumpers, which are flat races for jumping horses. "When the weather closed in," he said yesterday, "the first few days off were quite nice, because I'd had a few falls and I was quite sore. But now it's just depressing as we've missed so many races. Racing is what we all love doing, so the sooner we get back the better."

Staff at Kempton spent yesterday scraping snow and ice off the artificial surface, but with more snow forecast, the meeting, organised to allow jump trainers to give their charges a leg-stretch, is subject to a morning inspection.

Whatever happens today at the Sunbury track, just two miles from beleaguered Heathrow, next week's more important prizes are highly unlikely to be decided, if betting markets are a guide. Ladbrokes make the Boxing Day meeting, featuring the King George VI Chase, a 4-7 shot to be called off.

Sport in Ireland is apparently a better bet; the cards at Leopardstown and Limerick are 5-4 to go ahead. But McCoy may have to wait another year to fulfil another of his ambitions. He has now won all the major Grand Nationals in these isles bar the Welsh version at Chepstow, traditionally held on the day after Boxing Day. But that card, too, is an odds-on shot to fall to the weather.

Should Kempton beat the freeze, Kauto Star, a no longer price than evens to win an unprecedented fifth King George, will face a maximum of 13 rivals, with no surprise absentees among those declared for the William Hill-sponsored Grade One three-miler at yesterday's penultimate stage.

Turf account

Sue Montgomery's Nap

Vertige Dore (1.50 Kempton) Successful and experienced bumper performer for two top yards who reverts to the level after a debut hurdles success.



Next best

Nazreef (2.05 Southwell) Scored by an eased-down 11 lengths over today's course six days ago and his rise in the ratings should not stop a follow-up.



One to watch

Look out for French-bred four-year-old Batonnier (A King) when weather relents.

Hyperion selections

Kempton

12.50 Journeyman 1.20 Dark Lover 1.50 Sire De Grugy 2.20 National Trust 2.50 Eradicate 3.20 Harry Tricker 3.50 Noland

Southwell

12.35 Silk Slippers 1.05 Kheley 1.35 Songjjang 2.05 Xilerator 2.35 Eastern Hills 3.05 Shifting Gold 3.35 Abulharith

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Finance Team Leader

£23000 - £27000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Do you want to work for a Compa...

Recruitment Genius: Marketing Executive

£18000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Do you want to work for a Compa...

Recruitment Genius: HR Advisor

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join an innovative a...

Recruitment Genius: Production Technician

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Production Technician is required to join a ...

Day In a Page

HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

Time to play God

Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

MacGyver returns, but with a difference

Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

Tunnel renaissance

Why cities are hiding roads underground
'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

Boys to men

The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

Crufts 2015

Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
10 best projectors

How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

Want to recreate the big-screen experience in your sitting room? IndyBest sizes up gadgets to form your film-watching
Manchester City 1 Barcelona 2 player ratings: Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man?

Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man at the Etihad?
Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

Monaco: the making of Wenger

Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
'Birdman' and 'Bullets Over Broadway': Homage or plagiarism?

Homage or plagiarism?

'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
Broadchurch ends as damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

Broadchurch, Series 2 finale, review
A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower: inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

Inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower