Sport

After 4358 winners and 20 consecutive jockey-of-the-year titles, Tony McCoy is a knight

London Champion jumps jockey Tony McCoy will become Sir Anthony after receiving a knighthood in the Queen's New Year Honours list in recognition of his services to horse racing.

The 41-year-old retired at the end of April when he brought the curtain down on a spectacular 23-year National Hunt career.

Winning feeling: Tony McCoy with the jockeys' championship trophy won for the 20th consecutive time on the day he ...
Winning feeling: Tony McCoy with the jockeys' championship trophy won for the 20th consecutive time on the day he retired in April 2015. Photo: Getty Images

"It is an unbelievable privilege and honour to receive a knighthood in the New Year honours list. I certainly wasn't expecting it," McCoy said.

"I consider myself lucky to have had a job I loved, every single day.

"A knighthood really tops off what's been a crazy and memorable year".

McCoy counted 31 Cheltenham Festival winners, as well as two Gold Cups and one famous Grand National success, among his big-race haul.

He was also crowned champion jockey for 20 consecutive years, with the trophy decommissioned and awarded to him permanently at the end of last season.

He rode 4358 winners, starting with Legal Steps at Thurles in March 1992 and ending with Capard King at Ayr on April 17.

McCoy set countless records, most notably posting an incredible 289 winners in the 2001/02 season – a feat which surpassed Sir Gordon Richards' long-standing record of 269.

The Northern Irishman secured another piece of history in 2010 when he became the first jockey to win the BBC Sports Personality of the Year following his success aboard Don't Push It in his 15th attempt to win the Grand National.

McCoy was appointed MBE in the 2003 Queen's Birthday honours and OBE in the 2010 birthday honours list.

He is only the second jockey in history to have been awarded a knighthood, with Richards the first in 1953.

CAREER HIGHLIGHTS

Centuries: 20

Double-centuries: 9

Champion jockey titles: 20

Most winners in a season: 289

Cheltenham Festival wins: 31

Cheltenham Gold Cup wins: 2

Grand National wins: 1

PA-AAP