Belfast Telegraph

AP McCoy samples taste of the high life ahead of behind-the-scenes documentary premiere

By Claire McNeilly

Tony McCoy is flying high in his retirement - as a pilot.

And afterwards he tweeted his thanks to Team Bonhomme, saying: "Really enjoyed it. I hope you're in the winners enclosure @Ascot #AirRace."

It comes as an intimate documentary about the life and times of McCoy is set to premiere at the Toronto Film Festival next month - one of only 20 chosen from more than 6,000.

A trailer has recently been released for Being AP, which follows the story of arguably the greatest ever jump jockey during his emotional final year in the saddle.

It aims to give some insight into the mindset of the Moneyglass man as he reveals his unrelenting desire to succeed and his reluctance to turn his back on the sport he dominated.

It also shows glimpses of the punishing effect it had on his body down the years - including a scene where viewers see him talk about his shoulder deserving to be punished after he suffered an injury.

"Every part of my life was structured and controlled, but I could never control getting old," are the final words uttered by McCoy in the film.

The Northern Irish champion jockey's wife Chanelle said she was looking forward to attending the premiere - unlike the star himself.

"The first thing I said was 'this is cool' and the first thing AP said was 'do I have to go?'" she told reporters at the Galway Races last month.

In April, 37-year-old Chanelle spoke of her "huge sense of relief" after her husband decided to retire, adding that he'd been going to work every day "with an ambulance following him".

Chanelle admitted, however, that Tony - who is dad to their children Eve (7) and one-year-old Archie - would miss the day to day involvement in horse racing. But she told Racing UK that his reason for retiring last season was his desire to "go out on top".

"That was really the motivating thing because he really doesn't tick any boxes to retire," she said. "Injuries don't faze him, he doesn't mind starving, he doesn't mind the hot baths, he doesn't mind hundreds of hours in the car. He's still hugely driven."

Last week, the retired National Hunt champion said it was time to raise the minimum weights at which jockeys are asked to ride. And he voiced his concern at an increase in the number of jockeys 'flipping' - the practice of inducing vomiting after eating in order to make the regulated weight for a race.

McCoy - who resorted to very strict methods of keeping his weight down during a hugely successful two-decade career - said the problem with jockeys was only going to get worse as human beings in general are becoming bigger.

"Racing must be the only sport in which people are expected to perform while hardly eating," said the 41-year-old, who maintained his average racing weight of 10st 10lb by living on a diet of sugary tea, jelly babies and the odd jaffa cake.

Belfast Telegraph


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