ALLY McCOIST'S brilliant story of bumping into Sir Alex Ferguson shows just how much the Manchester United legend loves racing.
The Old Trafford icon's association with top horses and trainers is well known.
He is often seen in the winners' enclosure or eagerly following one of his runners alongside mate and top trainer Paul Nicholls.
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But now Rangers and Scotland icon McCoist has revealed how the great man liked nothing more than to be alone studying the form.
McCoist told the fantastic story to ITV Racing presenter Oli Bell and QPR striker Charlie Austin on their Studs Up podcast.
McCoist said: "I've got a wee house on the west coast [of Scotland] where my father was from, that I sometimes escape to.
"It's in a beautiful Scottish loch, with a small castle… anyway, he's manager of United at the time, but there's no games that weekend.
"I decided to nip up with the kids and the family for a couple of days, away we went.
"I walk into the hotel and the place is quite quiet, just one or two people there.
"I say to the barman, a glass of wine, order some lunch, I'll have a pint of real ale, sir.
"The barman looks at me and he says, 'I don't know what's in the water with you lot today'.
"I said, 'what do you mean?'
"He said, 'you footballers, you're all over the place today'.
"I said, 'what do you mean?'
Get 40-1 on Man Utd to beat Arsenal and Fergie's horse Give Me A Copper to win
"And he nodded over to the corner and sitting there was Sir Alex Ferguson with a pint and the Racing Post.
"Honestly! In the middle of nowhere. He's sitting with the Racing Post and a pint.
"I think his wife Cathy was doing a little bit of shopping.
"He decided to come in for a pint and he was sitting, studying the form for his bets in the afternoon because he had a weekend off. Brilliant!"
Ferguson has a horse running at Doncaster on Saturday called Give Me A Copper.
One of his top current runners is Protektorat, who netted him a cool £12,500 in a win at Cheltenham last November.
But the racehorse with which Fergie will best be remembered is the £200million Rock Of Gibraltar.
A disagreement over ownership fees between the ex-United boss and two Irish billionaires – who also happened to be United shareholders – almost tore the club apart.
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