Trainer Gordon Elliott’s future in the sport of horse racing looked in perilous danger on Monday morning after it was revealed that a widely circulated social media image of him sat straddled over a dead horse, giving a victory sign to the camera, was in fact a real image and not a photoshopped mock-up as many hoped that it would be.
On Sunday evening Gordon Elliott released a statement about the image and apologised profoundly for any offence that the photo has caused, however the tide of disgust from the wider racing public has left Elliott’s reputation in tatters overnight and many are baying for more strong action to be taken.
How this situation pans out now all depends on the ongoing IHRB (the Regulatory Body for Horseracing in Ireland) investigation, however the ramifications are highly likely to be felt far and wide and the incident is nothing less than a tragedy for the sport of horse racing at this juncture.
Let us all hope that matters are resolved quickly and satisfactorily and that racing can move on.
In 2007, at the age of 29, Gordon Elliott became the youngest ever trainer to saddle the winner of the Grand National when Silver Birch and Robbie Power obliged for the Cullentra House Stable.
Time has Cort up
Black Corton, the horse who helped catapult Bryony Frost into the limelight has been retired.
Frost and Black Corton combined in 25 races, winning eight times and were placed on numerous occasions. Frost was just a 5lb conditional when she began her association with the ten-year-old.
Teahupoo was cut to 16/1 with bet365* for the Triumph Hurdle following his convincing success.
Jason The Militant staked a claim for Champion Hurdle glory by landing the rescheduled Grade 3 Red Mills Trial Hurdle. He is quoted at 33/1 with bet365*
Novice Chase scorer Macgiloney has National Hunt or Kim Muir options open to him should he arrive at the Cheltenham Festival.
The Grade 3 Bobbyjo Chase went the way of Acapella Bourgeois and Danny Mullins again after winning it last year too. Mullins confirmed that the Grand National is definitely on the agenda for the runner-up Burrows Saint, but a decision is in abeyance for the winner.
Tamaroc Du Mathan provided Paul Nicholls with yet another victory in the Pendil Novices’ Chase.
Emmet Mullins sent over Cape Gentleman to land the spoils in the Dovecote Novices’ Hurdle. It looks like the Ballymore will be next on the agenda for the five-year-old.
Having his first try over three miles, Clondaw Castle took the Close Brothers Handicap Chase. Trainer Tom George said he will probably go to the Aintree Bowl next.
The Topham Handicap Chase is one possible option for My Way next after the front-runner registered a two and a quarter length victory in the Close Brothers Motor Finance Handicap Chase.
Tritonic staked his Triumph Hurdle claims by landing the Adonis Juvenile Hurdle. Bet365 cut Tritonic to 3/1 from 8’s for the Cheltenham Festival event.
Tommy Whittle scorer Sam’s Adventure added the Eider Chase to his staying CV when landing the Newcastle showpiece on Saturday afternoon.
Brian Ellison’s nine-year-old is now a 9/1 chance with Boylesports for the Midlands Grand National at Uttoxeter on March 20th.
Forest Of Dean claimed Winter Derby glory for John Gosden and Robert Havlin on the All-Weather at Lingfield.
Gosden said the Easter Classic over a mile and a quarter (on All-Weather Championships Finals Day) might be his preferred next race rather than the Lincoln Handicap for which he is available at 16/1 with race sponsors Unibet.
Brewin’upastorm was a nice winner of Fontwell’s National Spirit Hurdle and will next be seen in the Grade One Aintree Hurdle at the Grand National meeting.
The Paul Nicholls-trained Sametegal was pushed out to 33/1 for the St. James’s Place Festival Challenge Cup Open Hunters’ Chase after losing at odds-on, and by 12 lengths, to The Galloping Bear in Fontwell’s Whitelaw Challenge Cup.
Watch your bets! Cilaos Emery is not certain to come over for the Cheltenham Festival despite producing a dominant display at Naas on Sunday.
Cilaos Emery is currently a 20/1 poke with bet365* for both the Queen Mother Champion Chase and the Ryanair Chase.
* Betting odds quoted were correct at the time of article publication. All odds are subject to change.