Horse Racing Trainer’s Seven Consecutive Winners Will Go Down in History

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Regardless of where you are in the world, any horse racing trainer will tell you that getting one win at a meeting means it was a good day. But top trainers are hungry for success, and they probably feel the defeats more than they enjoy the wins. Perhaps that’s what separates the elite trainers from the rest.  

But what is a good day for the best trainers out there? Three wins? Four? How about seven? That’s exactly what happened to Gordon Elliott, the renowned Irish national hunt trainer, in early December. Seven consecutive wins at Navan Racecourse, which caused racing experts to consult the history books to see if it had been done before. So far, they’ve come up with nothing; certainly not for a jumps racing trainer before.  

The crowd at Navan was left stunned. If you had placed an accumulator bet on the seven winners, the odds would have come out at 37,204/1. The winning horses were: The Goffer (10/1), Ginto (11/8), Commander of Fleet (40/1), Riviere D’etel (1/4), Farouk D’Alene (7/2), Conflated (9/4), and Itwhatunitesus (10/11).  

Echoes of Dettori at Ascot in 1996 

Of course, while this was a historic moment for Elliott, there is at least some precedence for this kind of thing before, although not for a trainer. Back in 1996, jockey Frankie Dettori famously went through the card at Ascot, landing his famous “Magnificent Seven”. But the fact people are still talking about Dettori’s feat 25 years later shows what an extraordinary achievement things like this are.  

While Elliott didn’t take all the glory at Navan (there were eight races, rival trainer Willie Mullins won the first), he can still claim his feat was more improbable than Dettori’s, given the Ascot seven-timer came in at odds of around 25,000/1. And yet, several punters had backed Dettori that day, winning life-changing sums of money. At the time of writing, there have been no reports in the Irish media of punters backing all of Elliott’s horses in an accumulator (parlay) bet.  

One of the biggest bets in history 

In betting terms, these things are a rarity, of course. If you look at the biggest upsets (according to the betting lines) in elite sports over the last few decades, you might cite Leicester City’s Premier League title win (5,000/1), the St Louis Cardinals winning the World Series at 999/1, or even the Patriots’ comeback at Super Bowl LI. But this blows them out of the water.  

In a sense, though, this is no fluke. Elliott is regarded as one of the best trainers in the UK and Ireland and has had huge success in the blue-ribband events of national hunt racing like the Grand National and the Cheltenham Festival. He is just coming back from a suspension after some controversial photos were leaked earlier in the year. But he has put all of his rivals on notice. The statistics tell us that he will never repeat this again, however. No matter how much some ambitious bettors wish that it does.

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