AP McCoy's Blog: 8th September
I’m looking forward to the Legends race at Doncaster. Johnny Murtagh said he hopes it’s me and him in the final furlong because he wants to find out how good I really am. Well, Johnny had a little spell jumping a few years back and probably realised, not that he wasn’t good enough, but maybe he wasn’t tough enough. Maybe he couldn’t compete with the jump lads so he went back to Flat racing which he found a little easier.
Hopefully it’ll come down to strength in the end and I’ll be looking back to see where Johnny is!
Johnny was a world class jockey so it will be a real test of how good I am. It might just prove that I rode for very good trainers and had an agent like Dave Roberts who put me on the best horse every day. If it’s Luke Harvey who comes and beats Johnny and I, it just proves that anyone could probably do it.
I’ve been riding out every morning and a couple of weeks ago I realised how unfit I’ve gotten in such a short space of time, or rather, how fit I was when I was riding. I’ve been trying to get in shape again and I might have to see if my breeches still fit me! I’m looking forward to it and Jack Berry House is a great cause. The least I can do for Jack Berry is ride in this race.
But it’s all about winning, the bragging rights, getting one over on the others and giving Johnny Murtagh a pat on the back and saying ‘unlucky bud’. The temptation to come back to riding is gone though. I was a jockey once upon a time, but not anymore.
The St Leger will be an interesting race and Aidan’s got a few good ones in there. Order Of St George seems to be an improving horse, he’s going the right way and has a big chance. There wasn’t much between Bondi Beach and Storm The Stars at York and there might not be much to split them again. Fields Of Athenry ran well in the Ebor. I thought he was ridden a little aggressively and I know it was a handicap but I think he’s capable of better.
If I was going for one at a bit of a price I’d go for Fields Of Athenry.
There have been plenty of rumours about Aidan O’Brien, but the thing with Aidan is that every season he produces a Classic winner, maybe two, three or four. Every year he produces the goods and I don’t think he’ll be leaving Ballydoyle.
Joseph has been riding a bit more since Ryan has been injured. He’s a big lad and he’s quite keen on the training side of things. I think he will be very good at it. JP McManus has got a number of horses with Aidan up on the hill (Piltown). If you were talking from a selfish point of view, I would be very happy if Joseph gave up riding and went and trained horses on the hill for JP. I think that would make JP’s operation a little better, a little stronger, so selfishly I’d tell Joseph to give up riding and go and train on the hill because I think he would be good at it.
I think if anybody’s going to know how to train a racehorse going from being a jockey to being a trainer, it would be Joseph O’Brien.
I don’t think you’d hear JP complaining about it if he hears the news that Joseph is going to become a racehorse trainer.
The Arc isn’t very far away and the trials will show how well Treve is. If she goes to Longchamp in the form she’s been in for the last two years she will take all the beating. Jack Hobbs won well the other day and in the Irish Derby, he looks a real good stayer and if there was a bit of cut in the ground he might see it out better than the rest of them if it became a bit of a grind. Golden Horn was obviously a bit disappointing at York, but I think he has more class than Jack Hobbs and if I had to choose which of the pair I’d ride it would be Golden Horn. Flintshire won well in the USA last time, has run well in the Arc before and he could run well at a big price.
It’s not too clever to tip up a short price favourite for the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe but I think Treve is a great favourite.
It’s the premiere of Being AP at the Toronto Film Festival on Monday evening. 6000 documentaries were submitted and only 20 have got through, so to be one of those is very good, but we had a great director in Anthony Wonke. He is good at his job and it was a real test of his skills to try and make me come across as interesting! They have 200 hours of footage over a year-and-a-half, so there might just be enough to make me come across alright!
I’m going to Vegas first to watch Floyd Mayweather on Saturday night. I really wanted to go to the Pacquiao fight, but I’m so glad I didn’t. It was a poor match. I got up early in the morning to watch it and I think I would have fancied my chances better! Mayweather might just have to fight me so he beats Rocky Marciano’s record, but I don’t think Floyd would have the bottle to fight me. He punches like a sissy. He doesn’t knock anyone out does he? He’s a show pony. But I suppose he’s won 49 fights, so you can’t knock him too much.
With the air turning a bit colder, the National Hunt season is getting in to gear. I think Paul Nicholls is a shoo-in for the Trainers’ Championship. I’m not sure he’s got any superstars - no Kauto Star, Denman or Master Minded waiting in the wings. But Paul wins the big Saturday races. He’s a master of race planning and he’s a believer – he believes he can turn horses in to champions. If you look at the horses to win the major races, Paul will have a list of horses rated over 150 in the yard. Jonjo’s probably got four. That’s the difference. It’s a bit like Wales in the Euros, it’s no good having Gareth Bale if you haven’t got 10 others to go with him. You need to have strength in depth.