Co-owner and trainer of greyhounds Black Lee Bonus (left) and Miss Sprightly, Len Harris of Whiteman Creek. Photo Debrah Novak / The Daily Examiner
Co-owner and trainer of greyhounds Black Lee Bonus (left) and Miss Sprightly, Len Harris of Whiteman Creek. Photo Debrah Novak / The Daily Examiner Debrah Novak

Whiteman Creek trainer Len Harris has a spritely bunch

WHEN I visited Whiteman Creek greyhound trainers Len and Evelyn Harris for a story back in March Len pointed out a pup to watch called Black Lee Bonus.

She'd had one start and was lined up for a maiden in Dubbo but didn't race again until June. She proceeded to race competitively but didn't win until her sixth start.

Black Lee Bonus now has four wins from 12 starts including three in a row, all at Casino.

"She come on season when I was going to take her to Dubbo," Len said. "She drew box one for the maiden but I had to put her away for a month or two and that's why she was a bit slow to come on."

It turns out the whole litter by Magic Sprite out of Dark And Stormy is showing promise, in particular Miss Spritely, who had a bright start to her career with three wins from four starts.

"Miss Spritely ended up favourite in the big maiden in July, didn't end up doing any good and run fifth, but she has won a few since," Harris said.

"There's eight of them in the litter. All of them are pretty handy."

Harris plans to take both Black Lee Bonus and Miss Spritely to Gosford next week for heats of a Gosford To Wentworth Park event previously won by their mother Dark And Stormy.

In the meantime both are engaged tonight at Lismore. Miss Spritely has box one in a 4th Grade 420m race at 8.08pm while Black Lee Bonus (box 7) chases a fifth career win in a 5th Grade 420m race at 7.05pm.

Harris admits Black Lee Bonus will be up against testing material including kennel mate Black Zac Bonus (box 6), who featured in the article and video from my visit to the Harris Farm earlier this year.

On that occasion I wrote a preview about his three greyhounds lining up from boxes four, five and six for the Pubs and Clubs Cup Sprint Series Final.

Ignored by the punters, Black Zac Bonus (box 6, $15), Set Black Magic (box 5, $6.90) and Tilly Bonus (box 4, $25.50) went on to finish one, two and three.

Many trainers in both greyhound and horse racing circles are quick to blame journalists for jinxing their fortunes.

"Evelyn hates publicity, but it doesn't worry me one bit," Len said.

"Last time you came out we came first, second and third, and they were all at long odds."

It remains to be seen whether I've provided the rub of the green or not on this occasion. But Len, who currently has 23 dogs in work plus another half a dozen under the care of Frank Jamieson, keeps it in perspective.

"It's just a hobby.

"We've been in the business 47 years."



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