AP McCoy: "There were nights when I left home at 15 that I cried with homesickness"

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AP McCoy: "There were nights when I left home at 15 that I cried with homesickness"


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Keith Andrews had a very special guest with him in studio this week.

With Cheltenham round the corner, the legendary AP McCoy joined us on The Keith Andrews Show for an in-depth chat taking in his mindset at the height of his career as a champion jockey, life after retirement, his beloved Arsenal and even his take on the Lionel Messi vs Cristiano Ronaldo debate.

You can listen to the full chat on the podcast player:

McCoy shared an insight into the character building periods in his career, including leaving home at 15 to begin his career as a jockey - an experience he shared with Keith who left for Wolverhampton Wanderers at a similar age.  

"I left home when I was 15 and obviously I left home thinking, 'If I'm any good at this, I won't ever live back at home' and I didn't want people to think, 'Oh, he's back home here,'" he said of that urge to not be viewed as a failure.

"You do make those sacrifices. My younger sister was barely even 5 so I didn't get to see her growing up. But I didn't want to come back with my tail between my legs. I didn't want to be a failure.

"But I was quite an ambitious person and I was going to try and give it my best and if it didn't work... there were nights when I left home at 15 that I cried with homesickness. I thought, 'I do want to come home'. I was in my room and you think, 'God, I'm not sure I'm strong enough'. But I'm such a stubborn person."

He also looked back on the lack of satisfaction he felt even at the height of a career that saw him become champion jockey 20 years in a row, remarking a quip from his wife about his 20th year when he told her that he seemed to be finally performing well.      


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