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Lots Of OSS Action For Locke

Published: July 10, 2008 12:00 pm ET

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Harness racing fans will get their first glimpse of Ontario's two-year-old trotting colt crop on Tuesday, July 15 at Kawartha Downs, as the freshmen make their Ontario Sires Stakes debut in three $40,000 Gold Series eliminations.

Tuesday's event will cap off four action-packed days of provincial competition for Oshawa resident Harry Locke, who will watch his horses compete in Sudbury on Saturday, Elora on Monday and Fraserville on Tuesday.

"I won't bother going to Sudbury, but I'll get to Grand River and Kawartha," says Locke.

At Kawartha Locke will be rooting for Rogue Seelster, a son of Angus Hall he owns in partnership with trainer John Bax's Parkhill Stud Farm of Peterborough, breeder Glengate Farms of Campbellville and Betty Bax of Kitchener.

Rogue Seelster will start from Post 9 in the last $40,000 Gold elimination and heads into the provincial test off a solid July 5 qualifier at Mohawk Racetrack.

"I've seen him training only once, and he looked like a two-year-old in training," admits Locke, with a chuckle. "Anything can happen, especially with young trotters, so we'll keep our fingers crossed."

While Bax trains all Locke's trotters, Belle Vernon, PA resident Richard Gillock handles all of his pacers.

Prior to the post position draw Gillock had mentioned to Locke that he had a nice two-year-old trotting colt he was hoping to race in the Ontario Sires Stakes program, and in an ironic twist of fate, the colt will start in the same elimination as Rogue Seelster.

"Maybe I'll have a chance to get a picture taken one way or the other," muses Locke. "I don't have an ownership interest in the other horse, so it would not be as fun as if Rogue wins."

The other colt is Winning Mister, who heads into the Gold Elimination off a 1:58 win in a division of the W.N. Reynolds Memorial at Pocono Downs on July 5. Another son of Angus Hall, Winning Mister will start from Post 5 in the $40,000 skirmish.

Before he gets to Kawartha to watch Rogue Seelster and his freshman trotting colt peers on Tuesday, Locke will have tuned in to three-year-old trotting filly Valley Courtney's Grassroots battle at Sudbury Downs on Saturday night, and made the trip to Elora to see his homebred two-year-old pacing filly Bale Me Out make her Grassroots debut at Grand River Raceway.

Locke says Gillock is hoping Bale Me Out will also see action in the Gold Series this summer, but the long time owner is pragmatic enough not to start counting his chickens before they hatch.

"We've had some luck - I'm still in the business after 20 years," says the 77-year-old. "But I hate to get high, because as soon as you get high on one, things start to go wrong."

As a result, Locke figures he and his partners will know more about Rogue Seelster on Wednesday than they do today. The top three finishers from each of the eliminations on Tuesday will earn a return invitation to Kawartha Downs for the July 22 Gold Final.

In addition to Rogue Seelster, Peterborough resident Bax will also harness Zero Boundaries from Post 5 in the first elimination.

Owned by breeder Al Libfeld of Pickering, and Marvin Katz and Sam Goldband of Toronto, Zero Boundaries is by the trio's $925,921 winner Duke Of York and out of Libfeld's mare Crown Starlet, whose offspring include $700,000-plus winners Forever Starlet and Sir Perseverance.

Zero Boundaries and his peers will kick off the Gold Eliminations in Race 2, with the other two provincial battles slated for Races 4 and 6. Post time for Kawartha Downs' Tuesday program is 4:15 p.m.


To view Tuesday's entries, click here.

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