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AP McCoy explains his obsession for success in horse-racing

AP McCoy

AP McCoy’s decorated career as a jockey.

Legendary horse-racing jockey AP McCoy enjoyed a stellar career in his sport and has since revealed the obsession he had with it, resulting in its success.

Hailing from Moneyglass, Co. Antrim, the champion National Hunt jockey rode a record 4,358 winners, with his first coming when he was just 17.

In addition to that, he also was named as the BBC’s Sports Personality of the Year in 2010, before then winning a similar title with RTE in 2013.

And in a recent interview on Soccer AM, McCoy revealed that it was the lure of making history that drove him on all the time.

AP McCoy reveals what drove him during his success-laden career.

“The numbers are what I lived by,” he said. “The numbers are what kept me going every day. You always wanted to try and do things that people had never done.

“Lots of people I knew won Grand Nationals and big races, but when I woke up in the morning, I wanted to be different.”

Having retired in April 2015, McCoy has been able to reflect on his career a lot since, and the obsession he had with being the best in his sport.

“Sir Gordon Richards was the winning most jockey of all time, and he had a record that was there for 55 years, winning the most races in a year..

AP McCoy

“When I broke that record in 2001/02, it was a big thing. It was there for such a long time. To win 20 Jockey Championships consecutively.

“Being a jump jockey, you get injured quite a lot and you have a lot of falls. To try and stay sound for those twenty years, as much as anything else, mentally and physically.

“I think most days in my life, I used to… It’s not something that you like to talk about lightly now, with mental health being a big thing now.

“For 20 years, I used to think I had a mental health problem every morning when I woke up. I was never happy, nor was I ever satisfied. I was never content.

AP McCoy 1

“But it is obviously what drove me. I seem to like torturing myself, and I liked the challenge of every day. That’s the one thing that I would say about young people who are involved in sport now…

“It’s a very privileged thing to do, and don’t be making excuses. You can make excuses when you’re our age when you have nothing to do. Well, nothing interesting to do.”


Since retiring, McCoy has dabbled in a bit of punditry work for ITV Racing and has also contributed to BBC’s horse-racing coverage.

He also has shares in a few young horses, as he solidifies his legacy as one of the greats in his sport.

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