Clinton Raceway sends off summer with a bang on Sunday, hosting seven $24,000 Grassroots divisions for the three-year-old trotting colts
Trainer Wayne Henry will harness three colts in Sunday’s Grassroots show, handing the lines over to his younger brother, Trevor Henry, on one colt and stepping into the race bike himself on the other two. First of the Henry trio out of the gate is O Grady, which will start from the outside Post 7 in the sixth race.
"We’re likely going to have to leave some," notes the elder Henry, who will steer O Grady. "He can leave a little and he’s pretty sure-footed."
A winner of two races and $44,000 as a two-year-old, O Grady has struggled this season after losing a significant amount of weight over the winter. Neither veterinarians nor Henry can figure out the cause of the weight loss, and the trainer says it has had an impact on the Striking Sahbra son’s performance.
"He lost a lot of weight over the winter and just hasn’t really come back as good," says the horseman. "I’ve got him eating good now, but it’s hard to get weight back on. He looks okay, but he’s not where he should be."
The Henry Stable of Arthur and James Laverty of Sauble Beach share ownership on O Grady, who is winless in eight starts this season.
Trevor Henry will steer the second Henry Stable entry, sending homebred Fiesty Dan after his first lifetime win from Post 8 in the tenth race. Wayne Henry says the Fiesty GG son, named in honour of his part-owner Dan McCann of Parkhill, Ont., seems to be enjoying the recent cool weather after struggling through the summer months.
"We’ve had a lot of trouble with him too — breathing and allergies," notes Henry. "But he qualified a lot better the other day (August 29)."
Fiesty Dan toured the Hanover Raceway oval in 2:02.4 in his August 29 qualifier, faster than it has trotted since mid-June.
McCann and the Henry’s also share ownership on Toledo Seelster, who starts from Post 8 in the last $24,000 division. The most successful of his sophomore trotting colt stablemates this season, Toledo Seelster has a record of one win, three seconds and one third in 16 starts for earnings of $21,166.
"He’s not your top horse or anything, but he grinds out a living," says Henry of the son of Angus Hall. "He’s a sound horse, he just lacks that little extra that you need."
Henry will steer Toledo Seelster against a tough eleventh-race field which includes former Gold elimination winner Rosesbowls MVP from Post 4.
The three-year-old trotting colts will battle for Grassroots glory in Races 2, 4, 6, 7, 10, 11 and 12 on Sunday, with the first race of the afternoon rolling in behind the Clinton Raceway starting gate at 1:30 p.m.
To view Saturday's harness racing entries at Clinton, click here.