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Gordon Elliott: 'A moment of madness that I am going to have to spend the rest of my life paying for'

The trainer has been speaking further about the controversy to The Racing Post today.

Racing trainer Gordon Elliott.
Racing trainer Gordon Elliott.
Image: Laszlo Geczo/INPHO

GORDON ELLIOTT SAYS he understands he will be punished for an incident he described ‘as a moment of madness’ as the fallout continues from an image that has emerged of the leading racing trainer sitting on a dead horse.

The image was circulated on social media over the weekend with Elliott first apologising last night for any offence caused and tonight he has been barred from racing horses in Britain while the investigation by the Irish Horseracing Regulatory Board (IHRB) continues. 

Tonight in an interview with the Racing Post, Elliott has spoken further about the incident.

“It is indefensible. Whether alive or dead, the horse was entitled to dignity. A moment of madness that I am going to have to spend the rest of my life paying for and that my staff are suffering for.

“I will be punished, I fully understand that. But it absolutely breaks my heart to read and hear people say that I have no respect for my horses. That couldn’t be further from the truth. My whole life has revolved around horses since I was a child.

“When your world starts crumbling in front of you, it’s a scary place to be. I just hope people can understand how truly sorry I am and find some way to forgive me for what I have done.

“I can guarantee that this will never happen again to any animal, alive or dead.”

Elliott also stated in the interview that he had been informed while at Fairyhouse racecourse on Saturday about the circulation of the image, which he revealed was taken ‘a few years ago’.

“There were a lot of people telling me to say it was photoshopped, but the one thing I’ve always been told in life is that if you start telling lies you will end up telling lies for the rest of your life.”

He also paid tribute to his staff.

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“My heart goes out to all my staff. I know how hard they work. I know that I have not only let them down but that I have let the whole racing industry down too.

“That is down to my stupidity and I am truly, truly sorry.”

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About the author:

Fintan O'Toole

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