09/01/2004 11:00PM

Great Lakes: Entry appears solid

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MUSKEGON, Mich. - The entry of Monetary Star and Secret Romeo heads a field of eight Michigan-bred colts and geldings in the 80th running of the Frontier Handicap at Great Lakes Downs.

The $50,000 Frontier, at 1 1/8 miles, is the seventh of nine races on card that begins at 6:30 p.m. Eastern.

Monetary Star, last year's champion 3-year-old at this track, was assigned top weight of 121 pounds. In his last start, Monetary Star was a two-length winner over Secret Romeo, a multiple stakes winner here. Both are trained by leading trainer Gerald Bennett and were made the morning line choice at 8-5.

Secret Romeo won here on opening day, April 25, then ran several times in stakes races around the Midwest before returning here for the Aug. 17 upset by Monetary Star.

Akatsakat, the winner of the 2003 Frontier, and Do the Impossible were entered by Bob Gorham with Luis Martinez Jr. named to ride both.

Conspicuous by his absence is the state's 2003 juvenile champion, Rockem Sockem. He underwent throat surgery on Aug. 18 after a narrow victory in the Dowling Stakes four days earlier. Rockem Sockem returned to training after a few days and should be ready for the Mackinac Handicap later this month, Gorham, his trainer, said.