Tony McCoy

(Sir Anthony Peter McCoy)

Tony McCoy
Tony McCoy
  • Born: May 4, 1974
  • Nationality: Irish
  • Profession: Jockey (now Retired)









Quote Topics Cited
A helmet is the most important part of any jockey's kit because of the number of falls you take, so I wouldn't want to be wearing anything on the track unless it had been thoroughly tested.
A lot of healing is in the mind. I'm not talking about serious illnesses like cancer. I'm talking about ordinary broken bones. Healing begins in the head. You have to convince yourself you can do it.
By the nature of the sport and the danger we face daily, we are very close knit. Some of us have spent most of our lives together. To give you an example, having spent two decades sitting next to Richard Johnson and seeing him virtually every day, I have probably spent more time with him than I have my family, and he the same. Time ;Nature ;Families, Children & Parenting
Doctors are fantastic, but they err on the side of caution. But you can push yourself. You're not going to die from pain.
During every race, an ambulance trails the riders around the course. You know that sometimes you are going to end up in the back of that ambulance.
Essentially, I am a dreamer. I've dreamed all my life. When I started, I dreamed I'd be Champion because it is a sport that is all about the people who win the most, and I have a fear of not winning. Life ;Sports & Athletics
Even though people involved in racing think that it has a big sporting stage, it is a minority sport compared to some of the other high-profile events: football, Formula One or golf. Sports & Athletics
For eight or 10 years, I got wrapped up in chasing records. Everything was a number. Didn't matter what I won, it was a number. Every horse I rode was a number.
From a public perspective, the Grand National is the biggest race of all, and not to have won it yet is definitely a failure. But there's been a lot of jockeys every bit as good and better than me that haven't won it - John Francome, Peter Scudamore, Jonjo O'Neill, Charlie Swan, to name a few. Failure
Horses are like people - they have different personalities. They can be nice, friendly and hard-working, or awkward, difficult and lazy. If horses were people, some would be on the dole, and others would be entrepreneurs.
I am disappointed when I don't win, because I want to believe I can win on every horse I ride, which is a ridiculous thing to think. Even if I'm on a horse that I have woken up thinking has no chance, by the time I've reached the course, I'll have convinced myself that it can win and will be disappointed if it doesn't. Time
I am quite hard to live with, and I know that if I go through a bad run, I'm not the best company and am best left alone. But I'm not nearly as bad as people like to make out.
I could never have ridden 4,000 winners without loving my job, and If I ever get to the point where I'm not loving it, I'll stop.
I don't know which is stronger: the thrill of winning or the fear of failure. I don't know which one affects me most. I don't know where the middle is. Failure
I dream up things, and then I convince myself that they're possible.
I feel pressure every day. It is only pressure that I put on myself, but I would expect all professional sportspeople to feel pressure to perform their best whenever they are at work. Work, Workers & The Labor Force
I get butterflies before going out to ride every day, but they disappear as soon as I am on a horse, and I think that is the same for most jockeys. Then it is just down to you and the horse, and there is a certain freedom in that. Freedom & Liberty
I have found the right way to deal with my diet, largely through trial and error, but also by having good people around me all the time, and they have given me the right advice for my body. Time
I have seen countless colleagues struggle to come to terms with retirement. I learned a lot from Richard Dunwoody when he was riding, and I completely understand why he took off and undertook what most people consider mad challenges.
I know from sitting around with injuries how difficult life will be without racing and riding winners. Life
I like challenging myself. I'm not a person who likes not to work. Work, Workers & The Labor Force
I never had a written contract, was never officially a stable jockey.
I probably don't look healthy, but I have never got to the stage where I thought I was going to pass out.
I suppose I'm happy when I know I've given a horse a good ride, no matter where it is. I like playing golf in the summer; I'm happy when I hit a good shot, and I enjoy watching Arsenal playing beautiful football, but overall I can't believe you can be happy when you're not winning. I honestly can't accept that.
I think I'm skilful enough, but I don't consider myself a naturally talented, gifted sports person. Sports & Athletics
I think I've always used the whip in the correct way. I see marked horses every day, and it's not a pretty sight, but I've never marked a horse. Never.
I was determined my 4,000th winner would be in the green and gold colours of J. P. McManus and trained by Jonjo O'Neill, who have been my greatest supporters.
I was told that there's near on a million to one chance that I would be able to have children.
If I go racing tomorrow and I have five rides that all get beaten, all I want to do is get out there the next day and put it right. I hate having Sundays off; I hate having any day off.
If summer racing didn't exist, I could go on holiday, yes, because nobody else would then be riding winners; but as long it goes ahead, I'll do it for the reason that I want to ride more winners than anyone else.
If you ask most trainers who have ridden which pressure is greater - watching your horse or riding it - they will tell you it is harder watching it because you have no control over what happens.
If you break your sternum or your ribs, you can still move. It's going to hurt, but if you can cope with it, you'll do it.
If you've got a regular feed of winners, you control your mind to do it. It becomes a must. If you didn't have that regular flow of winning, whether you could get yourself to do that, I don't know. It's a lot easier when you know the next day you can win and you can win and win, it's worth doing it.
I'm very lucky that I love what I do. I've never thought of it as work. I've never done it for the money. Love, Romance, Marriage & Sex ;Money, Coins & Minting ;Work, Workers & The Labor Force
I'm very lucky to live my life through a sport that I love. I'm in a very privileged position that my work is my hobby. Life ;Love, Romance, Marriage & Sex ;Work, Workers & The Labor Force
In my opinion, the power of the mind in sport is vital. If you can overpower those physical risks mentally, you can get your body round it physically. I've made my body do things because of my mind that it shouldn't have been able to do. Sports & Athletics ;Power
It always hurts a bit to pick the 'wrong one' in a race as big as the Champion Hurdle, and then, to make matters worse, you go and get beat by the horse you rejected.
It will not surprise you to learn that it is not uncommon for jockeys who struggle with their weight to starve themselves and spend hours in the sauna to lose a few pounds to be able to make a big-race ride.
It's not hard to motivate myself because once you get a taste for winning races, you simply don't want to do anything else. You get a buzz from it. You want it every day. Only someone who has experienced winning can understand how good it feels.
I've always got a sweet tooth. I have chocolate hidden in places that nobody knows about.
I've appreciated every winner. I love them all. Love, Romance, Marriage & Sex
I've been on some very good horses which have died, and that's very tough to take. But as much as we love the horses, and care for them, human life is obviously more important. Some good friends of mine have died or been paralysed while doing a job we all love. Life ;Love, Romance, Marriage & Sex
I've ridden 3,651 winners, if that's any good to you. I don't count the falls. I count the winners.
Many of us in the jockeys' room are wasting to ride many pounds below our natural weight, but all the while you are doing that, you also want to ensure that you are as strong as possible so that you can give your mount every possible chance in a race.
Most days, I have a slice of toast, then lie in a hot bath for an hour to get up a sweat. I have a sauna at the racecourse and then go and ride. On the way home, I might stop at a service station and have a bar of chocolate and a Diet Coke. And that's it, basically.
My first winner was on Legal Steps, in Ireland, at Thurles, in March 1992. I rode for Jim Bolger, and his stable jockey was Christy Roche. Law, Courts, Jails, Crime & Law Enforcement
No matter how long I go without riding winners, I know in the back of my head that I can ride.
Private dreams are the most powerful. You have to dream of success to make it happen, and if you don't believe in yourself, nobody else will. But that doesn't mean you have to go around telling everyone about it. Success
Racing is a great sport, but we need people to come along and see that for themselves. Maybe they're not used to going racing or haven't been before, but I think people get a taste for it; they do come back. Sports & Athletics
Racing may be a minority sport, but I wouldn't swap it for all the money in the world. Sports & Athletics ;Money, Coins & Minting
Really racing is about the horses, not me. You can't do it without the horses, and they are the big players as are the lads who look after them, and they rarely get a mention.
Sir Gordon Richards was the most successful jockey - flat or jumps - there's ever been: champion jockey for 26 years. He set a record of 269 winners in the season 55 years before I broke it. That was my greatest achievement.
The criticism does not hurt because I have always been my own worst critic. I wouldn't say I don't respect other people's opinions, but my opinion is the most important. Respect
The day I go out there and don't want to win is the day I will give up.
The National is about however long it takes to run that race - eight minutes of fame - but champion jockey is about racing 365 days a year. I actually wouldn't swap any of my winners for the National.
There are many tough sides to being a jockey. Injury is something we all dread, but spending lengthy periods in the bath or the sauna just to shed a few pounds can be an exhausting and draining experience.
There is no place for arrogance or complacency in racing because you are up there one minute and on your backside the next.
When I started off riding, you dream about being champion jockey. Then I wanted to be champion jockey again. Then I wanted to ride 200 winners in a season. Then, when there was a chance of riding more winners than Richard Dunwoody, that was my goal.
When I was 18, I broke my leg, and my shin came right through - like I had two knees.
When I was a kid, if someone had asked who I'd meet if it could be anyone in the world, it would've been Liam Brady.
When I'm injured, I eat everything - proper junk. That's the one thing about being injured so much, I get to treat myself.
When you give someone a commitment to ride their horse, you do it - unless, God forbid, something serious has happened. It would be laziness not to do it. Religion & God
You always get a buzz from winning. Winning is... everything.
You don't have to be Einstein to see that horse racing is dangerous. Those two ambulances driving behind you aren't there for the scenery. I will never get over the fatalities of colleagues. It is the saddest and toughest part of this sport. Sports & Athletics
You need fear and doubt to drive you on. Without it, you end up living in the past and being happy with what you have achieved.
You only worry about your head or spinal column. Everything else, some way or another, will repair in time. Time