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Tony McCoy still keen to smash records

By Adrian Rutherford

Racing's greatest ever jump jockey hasn't ruled out adding another magical milestone to his remarkable list of achievements.

After a flying start, Tony McCoy's sights are firmly set on riding 300 winners this season.

And the Moneyglass jockey, who celebrated the unprecedented landmark of his 4,000th career victory last November, believes smashing his 2001/2002 record of 289 winners is within reach.

"I've had a really good start to this season, it's been my best start ever," he told the Belfast Telegraph. "Keeping it going is always the problem, but you never know.

"You've got to dream and who knows? While it's still possible I'll keep dreaming about it."

It won't be easy – one bookmaker recently quoted him at 8-1 to complete the task.

However, McCoy has given himself a chance by making a sensational start to the season, racking up his fastest ever half century of winners.

"I'll need a lot of luck and everything has to go right, but there is nothing that is impossible," he added. "Everything is possible, I've always been a believer in that."

So too 5,000 winners.

"That is a huge number and racing is very much a day-to-day business," he added.

"It is a lot of winners but again it is not impossible."

McCoy was one of 13 well-known people who have been awarded honorary degrees by the University of Ulster. The 40-year-old was joined by his wife Chanelle and children at the university's Coleraine campus yesterday to pick up the accolade.

"It's something unique – I never thought that one day I would be receiving an honorary doctorate," he added.

"It's something I'm very proud of and something I'm very grateful for. There are a lot of students here today who have worked a lot harder for their degree than I have, but it's still something I'm very proud of.

"I don't think my old school principal would have expected to see me standing here receiving this. I've had a fantastic year and honours like this really cap it off," he added.

Meanwhile, a rise in class is imminent for Stepping Out after she showed a neat turn of foot to win the EBF Stallions Breeding Winners Park Suite Fillies' Handicap at Pontefract.

Absent for 11 months through injury, the Tom Dascombe-trained three-year-old had won on her second comeback run at Goodwood and could notch more wins against her own sex over sprint distances.

Richard Kingscote had the 3-1 favourite handily placed as the tight-packed field turned for home and she bounded away to score by a length and a quarter from Lady Horatia.

"She fractured her pastern last year so we virtually gave her a year off and she's going the right way now," said Dascombe.

"I thought she'd get seven furlongs or a mile, but she didn't stay at Newbury so we dropped her back and she's getting the hang of things.

"We might try her again at seven. The stiff six here suited her and we've got plenty of options. I suppose ultimately we'll probably give her another run in a handicap then try to get some black type. She wouldn't want soft ground."

Apprentice George Chaloner was banned for two days (July 14 and 15) for careless riding on fourth-placed Tumblewind.

Pallister (5-2) is likely to be considered for two-year-old Group races over seven furlongs after coming with a strong run to claim the Spindrifter Conditions Stakes.

The Mark Johnston-trained juvenile had plenty to do at the furlong pole but finished with a flourish for Franny Norton to defeat Winstanley by a length and a quarter.

"I think it was his class that got him to win at this trip. He's crying out for seven and when he does I think he will be a serious two-year-old," said Johnston's son, Charlie.

"I'm not sure what the plans will be for him but we have quite a few two-year-olds of this ilk. It's a nice problem. We'll have to pick the races and keep them apart."

Belfast Telegraph


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