SLIDESHOW: Tony McCoy retires without winner at Sandown

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Tony McCoy finished third aboard Box Office on the final ride of his career in the bet365 Handicap Hurdle at Sandown.

The crowds cheered McCoy from the moment he entered the paddock to mount the 5-2 favourite, applauding him the past the stands on the way to the start of the two-and-a-half-mile heat.

Tony McCoy walks out for his last race

Tony McCoy walks out for his last race

Another shout of approval heralded the start, with McCoy settling Box Office towards the rear in the early stages before he started to manoeuvre across the track as the race began in earnest.

However, despite travelling well three flights from home, the Jonjo O’Neill-trained runner found little under pressure and had to settle for a place behind Brother Tedd (9-1).

A tearful McCoy said: “It’s amazing. I’ve been so lucky all my life. I’ll never forget this day.”

McCoy also had to settle for third aboard Mr Mole in the bet365 AP McCoy Celebration Chase, the penultimate ride of his illustrious career, at Sandown.

McCoy raced prominently on the Paul Nicholls-trained runner but the writing was on the wall as he began to push along at the third-last fence as eventual winner Special Tiara kicked for home.

While Mr Mole kept on at the one pace, McCoy could not reel back the 3-1 favourite, who ran out a six-length winner.

Former champion two-mile chaser Sprinter Sacre returned to something like his old self in second, with McCoy edged out for third place.

Winning rider Noel Fehily said of the imminent departure of McCoy: “It’s very sad to see him go.

“We have been very close for the last number of years and it’s a sad day for racing.”