AP McCoy to ride Carlingford Lough in Cheltenham Gold Cup

By Frank KeoghBBC Sport
AP McCoy and Carlingford Lough
AP McCoy won the Hennessy Gold Cup aboard Carlingford Lough earlier this month

AP McCoy is set to ride Carlingford Lough in his final Cheltenham Gold Cup.

McCoy, twice a winner in 1997 and 2012, sticks with the Irish Hennessy winner, owned by JP McManus, for next month's race despite another potential mount - Holywell - being a shorter price.

"I couldn't be happier that Carlingford Lough will be my ride," the 40-year-old said in his Cheltenham Racecourse blog.external-link

The 19-times champion jump jockey announced earlier this month he will retire by the end of the season.

The Northern Irishman, who won his Gold Cups on Mr Mulligan and Synchronised, added: "Cheltenham this year will probably be a little emotional for me but hopefully I will enjoy it more than I ever have as it will be the last time I will be riding there."

AP McCoy questioned retirement decision

The John Kiely-trained Carlingford Lough won at Leopardstown on 8 February, the day after McCoy announced his intention to retire.

He finished sixth in the RSA Chase at Cheltenham last year, while Holywell - ridden to victory at Kelso by McCoy last week - has twice won at the Festival for trainer Jonjo O'Neill.

Carlingford Lough is as big as 12-1 for the Gold Cup on 13 March while Holywell, owned by Gay Smith, is a general 10-1 fourth favourite behind market leader Silviniaco Conti (3-1).

McCoy says he is still unsure when his final race day will be. "I will try and give everyone notice of when it will be but I am still not sure myself," he said.

The British jump racing season finishes on 25 April.

More on AP McCoy
How 'Iron Man' McCoy became a legend
McCoy on retirement and regrets

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