Image of trainer Gordon Elliot leaked posing on dead horse: Irish trainer Gordon Elliot is set to face an investigation with the IHRB.
Irish horse trainer Gordon Elliot has blown up in the news in the last 24 hours over a horrific image was posted on social media. The picture sees Elliot posing with a peace sign while sitting on top of a dead horse.
The image leaked on Twitter on late Saturday with it being overlooked and deemed as fake. However, Elliot has come out today with an apology and has admitted it is indeed “genuine”. The Meath trainer’s apology read.
“Firstly, I apologise profoundly for any offence that this photo has caused and can categorically state that the welfare of each and every horse under my care is paramount and has been central to the success that we have enjoyed here at Cullentra.
The photo in question was taken some time ago and occurred after a horse had died of an apparent heart attack on the gallops.
I appreciate that an initial viewing of this photo suggests it is a callous and staged photo but nothing could be further from the truth.”
Elliot continued to say that he wasn’t thinking when the photo was taken. After the horse collapsed, he rushed over and stood over the horse, concerned for its wellbeing. He then received a phone call and instinctively sat down. As someone beckoned to him, he raised his hand for them to wait.
He claims this is the real context of the photograph. Regardless the Irish Horseracing Regulatory Board is investigating the matter. Sky Sports news reported that if the IHRB is to fine him, the English board might ban him from racing in England ever again. The trainer has stated he will offer his full cooperation with the investigation after the media backlash.
This would be a massive blow to Elliot as he houses many of Irelands leading favourites going into Cheltenham. Especially given his horses have been in fine form, with 147 wins so far this season.
His favourites include horses Envoi Allen and Zanahiyr, and Tiger Roll. Gigginstown House Stud has voiced their support for Elliot despite the photo’s horrific nature. The Stud and Elliot have a long, successful relationship with horses such as Tiger Roll and Don Cossack.
However, others do not share this support with sponsors Betfair deciding to disassociate themselves with the trainer. A Betfair representative issued a statement today announcing the termination of their association with the trainer.
“While we recognise that Gordon deeply regrets and apologised unreservedly for his poor judgement.
His actions are completely at odds with the values of the Betfair brand and that of our employees.
With that in mind, we have decided to discontinue our association with Gordon with immediate effect.”
Read our other articles on everything sport, keeping you up to date at Sports News Ireland.
Click here for more