Former winner AP McCoy previews Saturday's Scottish Grand National

By Geoff WebsterBBC Scotland
AP McCoy
AP McCoy offers his insight into the ones to watch at the Scottish Grand National

It's two years ago this month that jockey Tony McCoy called time on the most successful career in National Hunt racing history.

Behind him, he left a record of 20 consecutive champion jockey titles, along with wins in the Grand National, the Cheltenham Gold Cup and the Champion Hurdle.

Ahead of him lay a knighthood. He became Sir Anthony McCoy, but to the sporting world he is known as 'AP'.

He rode 4,358 winners, more than any other jump jockey has ever done or is likely to do.

His unparalleled record of success, however, included just one win in the Coral Scottish Grand National - Belmont King back in 1997.

And now, 20 years on, he looks back on that day and ahead to this year's race.

"Belmont King was supposed to run in the Aintree Grand National the weekend before," McCoy said. "But that was the year of the bomb scare and he got pretty upset with all the commotion that was going on and trainer Paul Nicholls thought that when they were re-running the race on the Monday it was a bit too much to be bringing him back so soon.

"So, he thought he'd keep him for a week later and the Scottish National - luckily I rode him otherwise I'd never have won the race."

AP picks his winner

As for this year's race, McCoy has whittled the field down for us.

On last year's winner, Vicente, trained by Nicholls - "He likes the ground and has plenty of things in his favour."

There's also Vicente's stablemate, Arpege d'Alene - "I think he's got a squeak."

Derek Fox
AP McCoy insists Derek Fox's life will never be the same after winning the Grand National

And what of Henri Parry Morgan, trained in Wales by Peter Bowen? "He's been a little disappointing throughout the year but I can see him running a big race," McCoy added.

He also likes the chances of Southfield Royale and the only Scottish runner in the race, Seldom Inn, trained in the Borders by Sandy Thomson and ridden by Grand National-winning jockey, Derek Fox.

"The Grand National is a little bit of a life-changer for a jockey like Derek who hasn't had a huge amount of success - winning at Aintree is every jockey's dream."

So time to pin down the man who has savoured more success than any other jockey in jump history. Who does McCoy think will win the Scottish Grand National?

"There are 30 runners and it'll be hard to pick the winner but if you asked me which horse I could ride, I'd probably pick Henri Parry Morgan," he said.

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