By Simon Jackson.
Top trainer Paul Nicholls has paid tribute to multiple champion jumps jockey AP McCoy who received a knighthood in the New Year’s Honours List.
The now Sir Anthony McCoy retired from race-riding in April 2015 and received the honour following a hugely successful career that included victories in the Cheltenham Gold Cup on Mr Mulligan and Synchronised and the Grand National on Don’t Push It.
He was the first to ride 3000 winners – a feat equalled by Richard Johnson on St Saviour at Ludlow today [Monday] – and was also the first to ride 4000 winners before retiring with a total winning tally that exceeded 4350 winners.
“I’d like to add my congratulations to AP McCoy on his knighthood in the New Year’s Honours List,” said Nicholls, the nine-time champion national hunt trainer who has bagged 37 winners at the Cheltenham Festival.
“Sir Anthony sounds perfect to me and no one deserves it more. He has been an absolute star for so many years on his way to 20 successive championships over jumps that will surely never be beaten.
“Along the way Sir Anthony rode plenty of big winners for me going back to his all the way victory on Belmont King in the 1997 Scottish Grand National,” Nicholls said when speaking to Betfair.com.
“For all his success in the saddle he has always been one of the good guys, level headed, down to earth and a wonderful ambassador for jump racing.”
Read ‘Horse Talk with Simon Jackson’ at London24 for the latest horse racing news.