Barney Curley has admitted his part in the January betting coup which allegedly cost bookmakers in the region of £2 million.

Eye Of The Tiger, Seven Summits, Indus Valley and Low Key all won in the UK on 22 January with each of the four horses being linked to Curley.

The former trainer did not admit his role at the time, but speaking at a Cheltenham preview night in Galway on Monday, Curley conceded he had been part of the gamble.

He said: "This is from the bottom of my heart. I am serious about this - I don't want to talk about it.

"I have a reason for saying that because it's a distraction from what I'm trying to do (his charity work with Direct Aid For Africa). It's over now, we've done it - it was very satisfying. Let's hope it does a bit of good.

"I'm a retired racehorse trainer. I'm not really a retired owner though, I have a few young horses."

Curley revealed former trainers Ian Balding and Martin Pipe, as well as the latter's son David, had written to him following the coup.

"It was very tough but I got two letters which I kept – that satisfies me," he said.

"One was from Ian Balding, who probably was one of the greatest sportsmen in England in this last 30 or 40 years. That'd be Clare and Andrew Balding's father.

"It was a great privilege to get a letter from him because he knows all about the horses.

"The other was a letter that arrived through the post one day. There was a photograph of me on the front of the paper and these people had cut off the photograph and stuck it on the front of this letter and it read Barney Curley Genius, Newmarket, England.

"I was going to throw it in the bin because all those things are rubbish, but I looked and there was a first class stamp on it.

"It was probably from one of the greatest training organisations of the last forty or fifty years. One side was signed, Martin Pipe, and the other was signed David Pipe, on a postcard. So I'll die happy enough with that."