Love At First Sight For Larger Than Life Tim Gossage

18 June 2024 | Ashleigh Paikos
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Tim Gossage with the trophy after Bettergetonpip's win at Gloucester Park

Tim Gossage with the trophy after Bettergetonpip's win at Gloucester Park Photo by Pacepix

There wouldn’t be many in WA that don’t know Tim Gossage’s face, but it’s become a regular around WA’s harness racing tracks and this week he celebrated some of the highest of highs that an owner can experience in this game.

On Friday night the larger-than-life former TV and current Radio personality found himself at Gloucester Park where Bettagetonpip took out $30,000 Barbagallo Western Crown for the 2YO Fillies, landing Gossage and the rest of her connections a one-way ticket to the Trots WA Winners Bar.

Not even 24 hours later they were back in the winner’s circle, this time with Gully Gum getting the cash at Bunbury Trotting Club for trainer Bob Mellsop, with Gossage describing the feeling as “Unbelievable.”

“Some of our owners met each other for the first time, and to have that group together, a lot of them, all of my side (of owners) are in harness racing for the first time, it was such a buzz,

“We couldn’t get on the track for a photo quick enough, going to the winner’s room for a drink, it was genuinely one of the highlights of being involved in not only harness racing but sport in general for me.” Gossage said

Most would be under the impression that Gossages interest in the trots is a recent one, but in one way or another, he’s been around the tracks for the past four decades, and time has only made the heart grow fonder.

It all began when he was a Cadet Journalist at The West Australian, in the sports department working under Gino de Mori, which saw him venturing to the trots.

This introduction led him to meeting the likes of John Hunt and the rest of the ‘Racing Radio’ crew way back when it was broadcast from the studios of 6PR, and many hours were spent at his beloved trots.

Gossages achievements are far too long to list, but there are actually many things most wouldn’t know about the very successful 50-something.

At one point he was calling trials at Gloucester Park, back when they held trial meetings on a Monday night, and he reached his WA harness racing peak when he called a meeting at Williams, including the Williams Cup.

In the late 1980’s, Gossage found himself in Sydney when he was offered an opportunity at the Australian Associated Press (AAP).

“I wrote form for AAP, and all that form for Harold Park Trots, Bankstown, Penrith, Bulli, writing the form guides for that, I used to do tips and late form for Syndey radio as a 21/22-year-old, there was my passion.

“Real passion, more so on the media side, I used to write for a publication called Trot West, I loved it.”

“I grew up in an era of all the stars, the stars of harness racing, Pure Steel, Satinover, San Simeon, Preux Chevalier, all the legends of the industry,

“Fred Kersley was my idol, still is, when he was training, I used to go to the trots on a Friday night and he would have 15 horses in, and I used to just stand there and gaze and just watch, he was just my absolute idol.”

It didn’t stop with his passion in the media side of things, eventually that passion grew, and Gossage found himself the owner of his very first pacer in the mid 80’s by the name of Noojee Dev, trained by Peter Anderson, winning at Richmond Raceway before it closed in 1991.

This isn’t a solo pursuit for Gossage, his wife Bronni is just as committed, with her love of horses deeply engrained, but the 2023 APG Yearling Sales was her ‘re-introduction’ to harness racing, and since then, the pair haven’t looked back, often spending many hours in the car travelling to all the country meetings, with Bronni patting as many horses as she can.

“I get a lot of people saying I’m a late bloomer to the industry, but not really, I’ve probably been in it longer than a lot that are currently in it, I was around when Chris Lewis was winning an Inter Dominion as one of the youngest drivers ever.”

Gossage walked away from the 2023 APG Yearling Sales as the proud part owner in two yearlings, one being Bettagetonpip and a gelding by the name of ‘Dobby’.

Tim Gossage is pretty hard to miss around the track, standing (literally) at 6’7, he’s become a regular around the country tracks in WA and in his words, he loves it.

“love the people, love the driving, I don’t know, I feel so attached too, when you go there, you’ve got a bit of free rein, not every race is a group one, not every race is for $50,000, I get just as much joy,

“Bronni and I have driven from Wagin, to Keller, to Northam, sometimes we don’t even have a horse in,

“If we weren’t allowed in the horse stall area to pat them, we wouldn’t go, it’s that attachment,

“It doesn’t matter where they race, or when they race, we will try and fit in our schedule.”

 

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