The Co Meath-based racehorse training firm operated by trainer, Gordon Elliott continued to trade profitably last year despite the fallout from the six-month training ban imposed on its owner.
New accounts filed to the Companies Office by the trainer’s G Elliott Racing Ltd show accumulated profits increased by €17,447 to €1.45 million in the 12 months to the end of August.
The firm’s 2020 accounts had last year disclosed that the company had “lost some training fees and sponsorship income since March 2021 due to the director’s ban from training for six months”.
The €17,447 post-tax profit last year is a sharp decrease on the post-tax profits of €124,391 at G Elliott Racing Ltd in the prior 12 months.
The 2021 accounts cover six months of Elliott’s training ban.
Underscoring the continued expansion of the Elliott training operation last year, employee numbers at the Elliott company increased from 85 to 87.
Aggregate pay to directors totalled €96,574 though the stable operation’s overall wage bill is not disclosed.
In March of last year, the horse-racing world was convulsed after the emergence on social media of a photo of the Grand National and Gold Cup-winning trainer sitting on a dead horse while taking a phone call.
Within days of the old photograph surfacing, sponsors cut their ties with Elliott and some horses were removed and sent to rival trainers.
Michael O’Leary's Gigginstown Stud partnership with Elliott has won two Grand Nationals with Tiger Roll and Gigginstown stood by Elliott as the controversy engulfed the Cullentra stables at Longwood, Enfield, Co Meath.
In response to the photo, the Irish Horseracing Regulatory Board (IHRB) imposed a 12-month ban on Elliott with the final six months suspended after finding that Elliott had brought the sport into disrepute.
As part of its sanction, the IRHB also imposed a €15,000 on the 44-year-old.
The IRHB stated that the photo showed "appalling bad taste" by the trainer and a "complete absence of respect" for the horse.
Elliott returned to training last September after serving his ban and on the eve of his return reflecting on the controversy, Elliott said in an interview: "You think you are thick-skinned until you see something like this. It was terrible. We got a week of very bad social media, newspapers, television, Twitter and everything else like it."
He said: "For me, it was something I’ve never experienced or would like to ever experience again but for my family and staff in the yard it was unbelievable; for something foolish I did. All the pain I put them through. I probably didn’t show my face in Summerhill for three or four months afterwards.
He added: "I made a mistake and deserved to be punished. It’s something I never want to happen again and would not wish on anyone."