He’s the greatest jockey there’s ever been, and now Sir Tony McCoy is also just the second to be made a knight.
Here’s exactly why AP’s knighthood in the New Year Honours list is so thoroughly deservec.
1. He’s been clocking up winners since he was basically a child.
His first winner was Legal Steps at Thurles back in 1992 when he was 17. This one is Go Ballistic at Ascot four years later. He officially retired earlier this year, just a couple of weeks before his 41st birthday.
2. He’s not afraid to be AP Mucky.
You’ve got something on your face, Tony… It’s a dirty job, but somebody’s got to do it.
3. He already knows his way to the Palace.
He was made an MBE back in 2003 and an OBE in 2011.
4. Because he’s taken a fall or two in his time.
5. Okay, maybe more than one or two.
No wonder he says he’s broken every bone in his body.
6. Because he’s better than this guy.
(S&G and Barratts/EMPICS)
McCoy’s record of 289 winners in the 2001-2 season surpassed Sir Gordon Richards’ long-standing record of 269 victories. Not entirely coincidentally, Richards is the only other jockey ever to be knighted.
7. Because he’s more popular than Jessica Ennis-Hill and Phil ‘The Power’ Taylor.
He beat them to the Sports Personality of the Year Award in 2010.
8. Because just when it looked like he might go his whole career without winning the Grand National, he won the Grand National.
He won it on Don’t Push it in 2010 – his 15th attempt.
9. He’ll race anything given half a chance.
Yes, even a camel.
10. Because he’s the greatest there’s ever been.
Count them: 31 Cheltenham Festival winners, two Gold Cups, one Grand National, 4,358 total winners and champion jockey for 20 consecutive seasons.
11. Because nobody else will ever win this trophy again.
After his 20th straight win, the trophy was decommissioned and awarded to him permanently. Fair enough, really.
12. Because this sign says it all.
Sir AP McCoy: legend.