Tony McCoy deserves to be remembered as ‘greatest of all time’

Tony McCoy with JP McManus and Jonjo O'Neill (right) at Sandown
Tony McCoy with JP McManus and Jonjo O'Neill (right) at Sandown

Jonjo O’Neill is adamant Tony McCoy deserves to be remembered as the “greatest of all time”.

The Jackdaws Castle handler enjoyed a long-standing association with the 20-times champion jockey since McCoy pledged his allegiances to prominent owner JP McManus in 2004.

O’Neill and McCoy famously won the 2010 Grand National with Don’t Push It, while the partnership also claimed the 2012 Cheltenham Gold Cup with Synchronised.

The 40-year-old jockey’s final ride was, appropriately, aboard the O’Neill-trained, McManus-owned Box Office, who finished third in the bet365 Handicap Hurdle.

“You couldn’t sum him up quickly,” said O’Neill, who himself was a two-times champion jockey.

“He’s a fantastic guy so we could be talking all day about him.

“He’s a great professional to work with, brilliant horseman, a great jockey - just a great all-rounder and ambassador for the sport.

“You name it, he’s done it. He knows all the horses, the form, how they should be ridden. If he has ridden them before then he’ll say if we should change tactics.

“He’s brilliant to work with and he knows the ground and the tracks. His experience is invaluable really.

“We’ll never get the likes of him again. We had a couple of big moments, obviously the Grand National and the Gold Cup,” he added.

“His 4,000th winner (Mountain Tunes) at Towcester was also fantastic.

“He got a kick out of that and it was an unbelievable achievement for a jump jockey.

“For me, he’s the greatest of all time and always will be,” the trainer told RacingUK Radio.