Gordon Elliott's record-breaking 37,204-1 seven-timer completes trainer's remarkable comeback from photo shame

WHISPER IT… but Gordon Elliott is back with a bang.

And it can only ramp up the expectations for Cheltenham Festival.

Elliott would have finished top trainer at last March's festival were it not for his ban after being photographed sitting on a dead horse.

But in just under three months since he served his sentence, Elliott is absolutely flying.

And he's doing it all without the horse he most regretted seeing leave his stable: Envoi Allen.

Elliott spoke of how sad he was to see the Cheveley Park Stud-owned star leave his Cullentra base.

But that horse fell at the Festival and flopped in last weekend's John Durkan chase.

It was the same weekend Elliott landed a record-breaking seven-timer at Navan.

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The three-time Grand National-winning trainer won seven of the eight races on the card – an astonishing feat at odds of 37,204-1.

It was also the first time a trainer in Britain or Ireland had saddled seven winners in one meeting.

Funnily enough, Elliott shared the old record of six with Willie Mullins and Paul Nicholls.

And it was Mullins whose victory in the first race of the day prevented Elliott from the clean sweep.

Still, the seven-timer – which had punters reminiscing about Frankie Dettori's Magnificent Seven at Ascot in 1996 – marked a brilliant return to racing for 43-year-old Elliott.

The delighted trainer said afterwards: "It’s been an unbelievable day – to get seven winners at one track and at Navan as well, my local track.

"I don’t know if it’s been done before in Ireland, but to train seven winners is unbelievable and we’ll never forget it.

"This is special after the year we’ve had, it just shows what it means to the staff and all my owners and friends.

"You see the likes of Noel Meade clapping you in, they are your proper friends, I can’t believe it.

"We’re back doing what we love doing."

Back indeed – and the timing could not be better.

Elliott's Magnificent Seven

12.00 The Goffer 10-1

12.33 Ginto 11-8

1.08 Commander Of Fleet 40-1

1.43 Riviere D'Etel 1-4

2.18 Farouk D'Alene 7-2

2.53 Conflated 9-4

3.28 Itswhatunitesus 10-11

Odds: 37,382-1


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