Trainer’s Explanation for This Photo: “I received a call and…sat down to take it.”

After a day of uncertainty, the following photo showing the hugely successful (multiple Grand National wins) Irish trainer Gordon Elliott nonchalantly sitting astride one of his dead horses has been confirmed – by the trainer himself – genuine.

In a statement, Elliott said:

“I would like to address the speculation and rumours that have been rife since an old photo of me began circulating on social media yesterday afternoon. 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.

“At what was a sad time, which it is when any horse under my care passes away, my initial reaction was to get the body removed from where it was positioned. I was standing over the horse waiting to help with the removal of the body, in the course of which, to my memory I received a call and, without thinking, I sat down to take it. Hearing a shout from one of my team, I gestured to wait until I was finished.

“Such background information may seem trivial at this time and will not allay the concerns of many people both within and outside the world of horse racing. However, I feel it is important to provide people with some context surrounding this photo. To the racing community, to anyone who has worked with and loves horses and to anyone offended by this image I cannot apologise enough.”

“I received a call and…sat down to take it.” And that, is that.

59 Comments

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  1. All bullshit aside, this photo shows the callous disregard for the life of a sentient being, the horse!!!!!

  2. It’s not at all like you were laying next to the horse and crying in grief! What a low life trainer using a dead horse as a seat to make a phone call and not to mention the other low life who took the picture! Despicable.

    • Jan… I know this picture is disgusting to say the least, but I don’t think whoever took this picture is a low life. I am looking at the glass half FULL and am thanking God he/she took this picture as it truly represents how the horses are used up and trashed!!! This horse deserves to be our poster horse, spread far and wide as it can be!!!

  3. That is truly disgusting. Just another confirmation that these people couldn’t care less about these beautiful animals.

  4. *Disgusting fat slob you are!! Your smile tells the story, evil humans you ALL are!! Horseracing needs to end, now, period..

  5. We had read of this on other websites & were appalled! Patrick is the only website besides social media that posted & displayed this disgusting so called trainer sitting on his dead horse. This trainer should have a horse stand on him when he dies! Just proof that no matter the country, racing people really don`t care about the horses, only the gamboling $ to be made.

  6. This parasite sub-human monster should be thrown in jail – no questions asked.
    Anything this idiot says doesn’t count after this photo and it reminds me all too much of callous killing Trophy Hunters who are wiping out our endangered animals on this planet to take a blood curtailing photo like this.
    There are many other things that I must refrain from saying.

    • Yes, Gina, all these lowlifes should be in jail!! Along with that truck driver hauling pigs to the slaughter house in Canada that intentionally ran over animal activist REGAN RUSSELL last June has still not been charged with her killing..

      • Marjorie, thank you for pointing that sin out. I urge everyone to check out on the internet Paul the piglet,just a baby, putting away his toys into the toy chest. Pigs are not only trainable,but, smart as hell. If you watch this video, you will WANT to go vegan.

        • Welcome, Bonnie. I watched a video and signed a petition to convict that driver that was posted after REGAN”S killing that showed her under that semi’s tires 3 days ago and haven’t been able to sleep since. How can all these evil low lifes kill horses and pigs, and a beautiful human being giving them water sleep at night?????? I became vegan years ago : ) Paul the piglet is adorable xx

  7. Yes and we supposed to,believe that are we ?
    It’s only another horse to you. Easy come easy go.no feeling no sentiment.🤮🤮🤮🤮🤮😡😡😡😡

  8. This heartless, disgusting shithead should be reincarnated as a racehorse with himself as the demonic trainer! How come he isn’t serving a lifetime in prison for extreme cruelty!

  9. What a piece of scum to sit on a deceased animal. He doesn’t need to be working with any animal!

  10. Aren’t the “good people of racing” getting tired of covering for these sociopaths after-the-fact? There’s just SO MANY OF THEM (the racing creeps, not the “good people”), and more and more are being revealed through social media — and this site. You’d think by now that they’d have weeded out most of the obvious criminals (like this clown) from their sick game. But, no. Instead, they keep cultivating them, praising them, making them hall-of-famers. Then, those “good, moral people” in this Dead Horse Shell Game have to act surprised when it’s revealed that most of the successful among them are just arrogant, horse-killing assholes.

    “Quick! Issue a press release. Yes, another one. Same as yesterday’s. Something to the effect of, ‘Our company strongly condemns…values and philosophy of equine welfare…will not be tolerated.'”

    Hey, racing officials: It’s not just him. It’s all of horse racing. So you can stop with the fake condemnations and corporate-speak BS. Because we see you. All of you.

  11. That was a really creative story. But. not even close to believable. No one, who loves their horses, would have been straddling them as they lay dead on the ground. So take your lame story and shove it. You disgusting animal.

  12. Please ban horse racing now. Too many deaths. So much cruelty. Treating non humans so carelessly is shameful.

  13. What a pathetic attempt at an explanation. Not buying it Elliott!
    As is said, a picture is worth a thousand words !!! It just shows who you are.
    Elliott, you are in a hole, you should stop digging!!

  14. I’m a motormouth, and not much leaves me speechless. This photo speaks volumes to the attitude towards racehorses-DISPOSABLE COMMODITIES. For the trainer/Elliot to try to mitigate the callous disrespect the photo clearly illustrates how tone deaf and disgusting he is; I read the story elsewhere (without the photo, who others were too gutless to print, thx Patrick), and wondered if Elliot really was ‘plausibly perched’ on the horse, but he may as well have been a preening big game hunter with his kill.

    THAT was no innocent involuntary act of perching (bad enough), and it’s contemptible that he thought this reframing of the photo was at all credible. Elliot has committed an egregious!! act that sums up his true nature, which is symptomatic of the racing world’s attitude to the poor beasts that are sacrificed in the name of money making. Indeed, this awful but telling shot would make a great poster to put in the faces of the racing industry, for the despicably rich at the top, to the lowly bettors. SICKENING, PERIOD.

  15. Are you kidding me, this asshole is not signaling to anyone , he’s doing a peace sign and smiling

  16. This vile ‘person’ is nothing but a total POS, but don’t forget he professes to love his horses….this photograph goes to show just how much ‘love’ he has for the innocent animals that keep his putrid body living a life of luxury whilst the horses die. (he quoted that this horse had a heart attack whilst training)

  17. I’m constantly reminded, sickened and disturbed by what goes on here in North American horse racing.
    Just when I thought that nothing more could shock me – it has.
    I must admit that this infuriates me as it should any normal human being, but it’s also very disturbing.
    Just when I thought that the image of starving prior stake horse champion Dr Dre would never leave my mind it has now been replaced with this vile image of a parasitic dirty rotten evil asshole like this.
    This parasite shit hole probably has a long record of crippling and killing horses even before this picture and since I’m not familiar with Ireland horse racing I’m not sure if they publicize their records like we do here in the U.S.
    If anybody reading this is familiar with Ireland horse racing and whether they publicize Trainer records please come forward and let me know.
    Parasites like this don’t possess any emotions, just a need to suck the life and blood out of their host for their own personal gain and survival.
    Everybody in the entire world should be calling the Ireland Racing Commission and demand that this Trainer gets suspended for life.
    Better still, just shut them all down.

    • Gina, did you read my reply to the good lady Barbara,about the 11yr old mare. (it’s on yesterday’s postings).

  18. Does anyone know if this guy does the barbaric Steeplechase races over in Ireland? With my poking around re this story, rest assured this picture and the comments are making headway in many avenues around the globe.

  19. I believe the POS is lying about phone call came in and I had to sit down to take it. How many phone calls in a day he sits down and then swings his leg over the chair sitting astride the chair and then gives the peace sign? This all makes me sick to my stomach.

  20. Standing over the horse waiting to help with the removal !!! Rubbish!! And what exactly would you be doing to help whilst standing over the horse!! I see a lot of horses removed and it would not require you to stand over the horse in such a manner!! Most disrespectful thing I have ever seen in a trainer. He should be fully investigated and penalised!!

  21. Sorry, your posing for the pic! Your a horrendous human being. Shame on you and your parents for raising an imbecile!

  22. Oh please!!!! You are giving the peace sign or victory sign, not sure which, and you are smiling while a straddle of a dead horse as well as talking on the phone.
    Really doesn’t appear to me that you are one bit upset.
    Your response to this disgusting photo is totally bogus.

  23. Ur a piece of shit that has no business training… really?? U had to sit down to take a phone call?? Disrespectful fuck…ud think I’d be a little upset about ur horse, saddle off & everything huh? Fucking jerkoff 😠

  24. Not only did you disrespect this poor horse but your bullshit excuse that you took a phone call – phone.in one hand and your other hand signalling how cool you are…so you are full of shit… your a low life with no regard for the animals feelings…and you call yourself a horseman… hope you sleep well at night Moron

  25. So who is this heartless dude?
    Look no further than TIGER ROLL (TR) one of his champion horses and how he was treated.
    TR won back to back titles as a 4 year old earned over 1 million but that wasn’t enough for this sadist.
    He had some long breaks due to serious injuries, but was brought back at 7 years old, then 8 years old, and 9 years old where his injuries caught up with him necessitating surgery and time-off.
    After his last race at 9 years old he was “too tired” and refused to go back into the saddling ring where the trainer takes the saddle off.
    The abuse continued as Gordon Elliott brought him back to run as a 10 year old in October 2020 and was HIGH WEIGHT – weighed heavily down with weights in his saddle because of his background which is abusive in and of itself.
    He STILL sent him out and TR was pulled up after the 20th fence by his jockey who said this: “He was never travelling and never had a cut at his fences. I pulled him up as he was in no sort of rhythm.”
    Gordon Elliott said this: “It was disappointing.”
    It appears that Gordon Elliott was actually trying to kill this horse and was probably “disappointed” when he didn’t die from a heart attack.
    I wouldn’t put it past him because this is a sinister, evil, abusive sociopath who, according to former stable employees, actually enjoyed killing horses and liked it when they died especially when they weren’t performing.
    One anonymous source “it was like he celebrated when a horse died,” well this pic says it all.

    • Total domination of the horse until he kills the horse, is what this sociopath, Gordon Elliott, wants evidently. Horseracing is full of sociopaths.
      Horseracing must end!!!! This reminds me of Steve Asmussen and Scott Blasi.

    • Gina, it looked to me as though he was celebrating the death of that horse. He sure was signing victory, too
      It would be a safe bet the horse he was straddling was not making money for him. Someone knows the name of that poor horse..
      Can’t help but wonder where Tiger Roll is now?!!
      Further, owners who continue with this guy are not any better than he is.
      He should be finished. Period.

  26. That horse was obviously malnourished…doesn’t matter when or how it happened to be there. Save the apology and the phoney explaination. I pitty the other horses under your “care”.

  27. SHUT DOWN HORSERACING — GIVE me a moment to HURL — what a vile, depravedly hateful Trainer, Gordon Elliot — no matter his explanation (laughable), it is clear he is one detestable human being who does NOT give a damn about Horses — he belongs nowhere NEAR Horses — for this reason this industry is evil, horrific and immoral — it’s filled with DEPRAVED Psychos like Gordon Elliot — SHUT DOWN HORSERACING FOREVER.

  28. Absolutely disgusting and shameful! This was a life, not a machine! Going to boycott racing! Shameful!

  29. I wish we knew the name of that poor horse. He doesn’t look well nourished – or in good condition, either – and I’m willing to bet that his “heart attack” was not from natural causes, at least not completely.
    When my first horse died from a stomach rupture, I refused to cover him with the tarp that someone offered because in life he was afraid of them. I spent all night next to his body to keep any animals away, since he passed out in the field and I couldn’t get him buried until the next day. I didn’t disrespect his body by using it as a chair, or a shelf, or an ashtray, or whatever the hell else these parasites do.
    This is the true picture of what these people are like: perched like vultures on the bodies of their victims, their smiling faces showing not a trace of remorse or grief or compassion. This image, along with the one of Bridgett Maloney in the landfill, will stay with me the rest of my life.

    • Rebecca, you Kelly and I went back and forth with Bridget. I thought the same as you when looking at this poor horse laying there
      (Except he didn’t still have his racing socks on) so in memory of Bridget 9/25/2019. Also, laying there with your horse..How kind was that.

    • Good for you respecting your horses fear of tarps! We sadly have had a young horse pass in our field as well. We have always had our horses buried here at our farm & will NEVER have them hauled away to a rendering plant like most people in our area do.We respect our horses more than to have them cutup into pieces like a salvaged vehicle!

  30. TRUE. YOU CANNOT APOLOGIZE ENOUGH BECAUSE THIS IS WHO YOU REALLY ARE. YOU ARE ONLY APOLOGIZING BECAUSE THERE IS NOW IRREFUTABLE PROOF.

  31. But you are smiling and giving the peace sign. not very kind. ya, I would take the call too and stand giving that poor horse some respect…..hope you have a similar experience in your life.

  32. They should lose their certificates and be barred from ever working again in the industry. Perhaps they should be served with animal abuse tickets and serve community time. Disgusting

  33. The horses in racing are ‘broken up’ in a race or in training, for the insurance money. Perhaps this is what the gesture of the cretinous fifth-rate semblance of a human is saying -‘Yay, we’re good for the money’ Shut the sport down. It is ALL bad for the lovely creatures who are bred and condemmed to this life. No amount of regulation is going to counteract the chilling brutality that human nature is capable of.

  34. First, and simply: your horse died because it ran for your profit — not at a natural pace nor in a natural setting. Racing horses does not benefit the horse — too many die.
    End this ridiculous practice!!

  35. This makes me so upset! Why would someone sit on their own dead horse?! 😭 Literally crying for the horse. This looks like my old horse, Bear. R.I.P. Bear😭 STOP TREATING HORSES LIKE THIS!

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