Sir Anthony McCoy Backs Skelton For BBC SPOTY But Expects Murray Hat-Trick
Rio was a great Olympics where the big names performed. The ones that are going to stand the test of time are Michael Phelps and Usain Bolt. For Phelps to win that many gold medals, he’s possibly the finest Olympian ever. Nobody’s ever going to win that many medals again. As for Bolt, to be the fastest man on the planet, that’s something to be proud of.
It was a great Olympics for Team GB too, but I’m not surprised with their medal haul because of the money that goes into it. It’s obviously a big help to have the funding to support a lot more professional training, but they didn’t waste it.
Nick Skelton is as good a showjumper as there’s ever been. To go to seven Olympic Games and winning gold with possibly his last chance is an incredible feat. If I could pick one person, I would love to see Nick Skelton win Sports Personality of the Year. I’ve known him a long time and have always thought he’s a brilliant rider. I have great respect for him. He’s very gifted.
I’m not really into gymnastics, but you’d have to say Max Whitlock was very good and Adam Peaty setting the world record in the swimming. For some reason, I think Mo Farah divides opinion.
I’d like to see Nick win Sports Personality, but who do I think will win it? Andy Murray is favourite and if he hadn’t already won it twice, I’d say he was a good thing. Maybe he deserves to win it again though, winning Wimbledon and Olympic gold in the same year. I think Andy will probably win it again.
I got really into the cycling with Jason Kenny matching Sir Chris Hoy’s tally. Sir Chris was brilliant on the BBC with Clare Balding too.
Cycling is what Team GB are most dominant in. We have some unbelievable cyclists, with the likes of Sir Bradley Wiggins, Jason Kenny and Laura Trott. That’s without even mentioning Chris Froome, who added a bronze medal to his three Tour de France victories. He’s relatively unfancied for the Sports Personality of the Year Award which is crazy, isn’t it? The problem with the cyclists though, is that votes will be divided between them.
With Nick Skelton winning a gold medal at the age of 58, I was thinking maybe I retired too early. Could I go for a career switch? I wouldn’t mind riding Big Star.
Another horse I would love to ride is Postponed, who really surprised me at York. He’s a better horse than I ever gave him credit for. He’s deceiving the way he races; he saves and conserves his energy and only does just enough. He deserves to be favourite for the Arc.
I think Idaho is a good thing to win the St Leger after winning the Great Voltigeur. He was second in the Irish Derby and third in the Epsom Derby and he looks like the further he goes, the better he’ll be. Idaho deserves to be short-priced favourite for the Leger at the moment.
Heartbreak City was an impressive winner of the Ebor. He travelled all the way through the race under the young lad, Adam McNamara. He’s a rider that’s good value for his five pound claim, that’s for sure.
I’m looking forward to the Ryder Cup and for the wildcards Lee Westwood is a certainty. He’s got more Ryder Cup points than anybody else (of the current team), which is a good enough reason. Plus, he’s been Darren Clarke’s best buddy on tour for 20 years or so. He’s got lots of experience and maybe that’s what the European team is lacking this year.
I think Martin Kaymer will be there. He’s German, so he’s got loads of bottle and he’s a major winner.
For the final place, I’d say it’s a toss-up between the two Irish lads – Shane Lowry and Graeme McDowell. I think on form, Shane has probably got a better chance, but G-Mac has Ryder Cup experience, holing the winning putt and things like that. Perhaps Shane just shades it.