Barry Geraghty: A Look Behind the Scenes

Barry Geraghty - A Look Behind the Scenes

Legends of the Saddle: “I’d say AP was the hardest of them all to get by”

There was no one stronger than AP [McCoy]. There was no one more committed or driven and when you got past AP, it was a hard-fought thing. But in the same breath, Paul Carberry could come from the next parish and rob the race off you, which he has done more times than not, so polar opposites but talented riders.

Mick Fitzgerald was a brilliant rider, Ruby [Walsh] obviously. Ruby ticked all the boxes, a great horseman, but they were all serious riders in their own right for different reasons. I’d say AP was the hardest of them all to get by.

You could take a bit from everyone. Paul Carberry could drop one out, like Jamie Spencer on the Flat, and drop it on the line. He was brilliant at that.

There was no-one stronger at the finish than AP. From the front he was a hard man to get past.

Ruby’s tactical awareness. He was always in the right place at the right time and had a great feel for pace.

Mick Fitzgerald was a brilliant rider over a fence, so they were all brilliant riders and you could pick the best out of all of them.

The Weighing Room: “You get your seat and I’ve been in mine for 15 years”

Mattie Batchelor was always good for a joke, but Harry Cobden is a bit of fun as well. There’s a good bunch; Wayne Hutchinson, who retired recently, rock solid. Just a good, solid fella, Noel Fehily likewise.

You won’t a meet a nicer person than Dickie Johnson, he’s top class. Ruby [Walsh] was so competitive as was AP [McCoy]. When things didn’t work out for those two it would be a quiet place.

In places like Cheltenham there’s no centre and everyone is all over the place. You get your seat and I’ve been in mine for 15 years. Ruby was beside me and so was Paul Carberry, but they’ve both gone now and now it’s Adrian Heskin who sits alongside me. The new lads come in and that’s their seat.

Some weighing rooms work towards the door. Exeter is one I’d say is working towards the door now! They all tend to differ a little bit, but there’s a constant turnover.

The younger jockeys would sometimes ask for advice and you do what you can to help the lads. However a lot of it they need to see for themselves and the really good lads they see it. They don’t need to ask because they know it.

If you saw a young lad doing it completely wrong you’d have a quiet word suggesting they try it a different way.

Future Champion Jockeys: “It was just about as close to perfect as you could get...“

Harry Cobden is in a very strong position riding for Paul Nicholls. He’s won the King George, he’s had Cheltenham winners and he’s only just turned 21 so he’s flying. The ball is in his court if you like.

Jonjo O’Neill Jnr is a brilliant rider, a lovely lad and the future is all ahead of him.

I think Conor Brace and Rex Dingle are two very good young lads who do the right things. You wouldn’t feel the need to advise them or they aren’t looking for advice because they know what they are doing and have a good read of it. I think they are good lads going the right way and if they keep their heads down it’s there for them.

The one ride I thought for a young fella was Jonjo Jnr’s ride in the Martin Pipe at Cheltenham. I thought he was brilliant.

The big stage is the ultimate test and if you can keep a cool head there. I just thought his timing on the day was perfection and it was just about as close to perfect as you could get on the big stage for a kid. For me, that will set him apart.

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