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Local News

Gai Waterhouse's legendary bookmaker father-in-law Bill Waterhouse passes away aged 97

Our thoughts are with the family at this difficult time.

By Jess Pullar
In heartbreaking news, the father-in-law of renowned Australian horse trainer Gai Waterhouse has passed away, aged 97.
Bill Waterhouse, who was once the biggest bookmaker in the world, died peacefully with his family by his side, it has been confirmed.
Bill's son Robbie, who is married to Gai took to Twitter to announce the tragic news.
"Very sad that we have lost my father, Bill Waterhouse," Robbie wrote.
"He left us peacefully with his family by his side. He was in great spirits till the end."
The proud son added that Bill had even enjoyed a great day with all of his great-grandchildren last Sunday.
Speaking to the Daily Telegraph, Robbie said that Bill had become "more and more frail".
"He himself knew two days ago that he wasn't going to make it," Robbie explained.
His son also added that the doctors had been in awe of 97-year-old Bill, who had put on a brave fight.
"The doctor said as recently as this morning said I've never had a patient fight more than your father. But we knew he was in trouble… He has lived an extraordinary life."
Robbie was in awe of his father's strength till the end. (Getty)
Bill set the family precedent when it came to bookmakers.
Robbie followed suit, also becoming a bookmaker. His grandson Tom has also done the same.
Bill was also a qualified barrister, and became renowned in his work as a bookmaker in the 1960s and 1970s.
Bill set the precedent for bookmaking in his family. (Getty)
Gai Waterhouse will be grieving the loss of Bill, to whom she was undoubtedly close with.
One of the most awarded trainers in Australian racing history, Gai is known for her stoic attitude and quick wit.
Speaking previously to Australian Women's Weekly, Gail said: "It's tough. But you've got to stick to your guns."
Gai is an inspiring force to be reckoned with. Our thoughts go out to her and her in-laws at this time. (Getty)
Ever an inspiring force, she entered the horse racing industry against even her own father's warnings.
"[My dad] said, 'Gai, it's a really hard life. I wouldn't recommend it. I just think there are too many downfalls'."
"I think he was hoping I'd get married and then whatever, but I was absolutely hell-bent on it."
Our thoughts go out to Gai, her husband Robbie and their extended family at this time of loss.

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