Gordon Elliott began his racing career as a teenager, working for Tony Martin at weekends and during school holidays. Having taken out his amateur rider’s license at the age of 16, he went on to be a prolific rider both in the point-to-point field and on the racecourse. He rode a total of 46 winners on the racecourse, with the highlight being his win in the Punchestown Champion Bumper on the Nigel Twiston-Davies-trained King’s Road in 1998. He also and also rode as an amateur for Martin Pipe. Having hung up his riding boots at the end of 2005, he began to concentrate on his new career as a trainer the following year. Gordon Elliott came to worldwide attention when training Silver Birch (Robbie Power) to win the Aintree Grand National in 2007, a success made all the more remarkable by the fact that, at the time, he had yet to train a winner in Ireland. Gordon trained five winners in Britain before his first success at home.
Don Cossack (Bryan Cooper) gave him another major success in the Cheltenham Gold Cup in March, 2016 and he sent out his first winner at Royal Ascot when Commissioned (Adam Kirby) landed the Queen Alexandra Stakes in June of the same year. Gordon recorded a treble on the opening day of the 2017 Cheltenham Festival when Labaik (Jack Kennedy), Apple’s Jade (Bryan Cooper) and Tiger Roll (Lisa O’Neill) all won. In all, Gordon has trained 14 Cheltenham winners and he was the leading trainer at the Festival for the first time in 2017 with six winners. Gordon went very close to winning his first National Hunt trainers’ championship in the 2016/2017 season. He led all the way until the penultimate day of the season, but while he missed out on the coveted crown, he did match Willie Mullins’ tally of 193 winners, a record for the number of winners in a season, set in 2012/2013.
It was reported that Gordon trained his 1,000th winner on the racecourse when Moonday Sun, ridden by Davy Russell, won at Punchestown on May 31st, 2017. Gordon enjoyed his first Group race success on the Flat when the Declan McDonogh-ridden Beckford won the Group 2 Gain Railway Stakes at the Curragh on July 1st, 2017.
Gordon became the first trainer to capture all three Grade 1s on the card at the Winter Festival at Fairyhouse. On Sunday, December 3, 2017, he won the Bar One Racing Royal Bond Novice Hurdle with Mengli Khan (Jack Kennedy), the Hatton’s Grace Hurdle with Apple’s Jade (Jack Kennedy) and the Drinmore Novice Chase with Death Duty (Davy Russell). Gordon won the most valuable race on the Irish calendar when General Principle, ridden by JJ Slevin, won the BoyleSports Irish Grand National at Fairyhouse on Easter Monday, April 2, 2018. It was his first success in the race.
A treble at Downpatrick on Sunday, March 25, 2018 saw Gordon set a new record of 194 winners in a season. He reached the 200 winner mark, the first trainer to do so in a National Hunt season, for the 2017/2018 season when the Declan Lavery-ridden Portnablagh won the Cork & Waterford Mares’ Point-To-Point INH Flat Race at Cork on Easter Monday, April 2, 2018.
Tiger Roll, a three-time Cheltenham Festival winner, gave Gordon his second success in the Aintree Grand National when winning under Davy Russell on Saturday, April 14, 2018.