Tony McCoy rides his 4,000th winner
Champion jockey breaks new ground at Towcester aboard JP McManus’s Mountain Tunes
Tony McCoy on Mountain Tunes wins The Weatherbys Novices Hurdle Race at Towcester, his 4,000th career win. Photograph: Rui Vieira/PA Wire
Tony McCoy finally reached his target of 4,000 jump racing winners at Towcester on Thursday when Mountain Tunes won the Weatherbys Novice Hurdle at the crowded Northamptonshire track under a remarkable ride from the multiple champion jockey.
The jockey reached the milestone, as he had fervently wished to do so, in the colours of his employer JP McManus but for most of the home straight it looked an impossible task.
McCoy’s mount, who went off the 6-4 favourite, was back in third and looked to be struggling but the rider never gave up and galvanised his mount to get the better of his rivals and catch Kris Spin in the closing stages.
The winning rider said: “It was just amazing, it couldn’t have worked out any better. To do it for (trainer) Jonjo (O’Neill) and the McManus’s is brilliant as they’ve been so good to me. It was always hopefully going to be in JP’s colours.
“To have Chanelle (Wife), Eve and Archie (children) here is great and to do it in the McManus silks means a lot - Eve thinks they belong to me!
“My agent, Dave Roberts, is here. His dad sadly passed away yesterday and he said to me this morning, his dad would really want him to be here, so I feel as much I’ve done it to make him happier, or Dave’s dad’s been looking down. That makes the day very special.
“I’m very lucky, I work in a great sport, I’ve got lots of support, I work for great people. You only have to look at the amount of people that have come out day to support it. I feel very humbled by it. I don’t feel like I’m any different to anyone else and I would hope the lads in the weighing room don’t think I think I’m any diffferent from any of the rest of them.
“Sadly, I’ve ridden 4,000 winers now, I’m going to have to try and ride a few more. I’m really proud of what I’ve achieved because it’s a tough sport. I’ve been able to last is something I’m very lucky to have been able to do, something I’m very proud of being able to do.
“You’ve just got to get on with it now. It’s over, tomorrow I’ll be back in the weighing room. Someone said to me in the weighing room, I should be riding 5,000 winners, not 4,000. You can never keep some people happy. I’m probably no different from he is.
“Obviously, it’s great to ride 4,000 winners but he’s a young horse. Sometimes you’ve got to do what’s right by a young horse. I felt like he was a little bit inexperienced and the race got away from him a little bit at the third-last. Horses always tend to enjoy what they do when they’re finishing well and he certainly was finishing well. It was like he got the hang of things.