12/31/2001 12:00AM

Carroll longshots one-two


NEW ORLEANS - You can see why trainer Josie Carroll wins about one out of every four stakes races she enters.

A perfectly spotted and prepped pair of Carroll-trained horses finished one-two Monday at Fair Grounds in the $75,000 Sugar Bowl Handicap, with Mapp Hill beating Lead by Example by 1 3/4 lengths.

What Carroll saw in her 2-year-old colts, the bettors did not. Mapp Hill was a 14-1 shot and Lead by Example, who won the Old Hickory here opening weekend, was 11-1. The winner paid $31.20 and keyed a $248.40 exacta. Mapp Hill, owned by Eugene and Laura Melnyk, ran six furlongs on a fast track in 1:11.51.

The pair had even more in common than their trainer and long odds. Both colts lacked early speed, and during the run down the backstretch they ran in tandem at the back of a nine-horse field.

The pace in front of them was quick, with the maiden Don Juan dueling with Front Nine and Twining Dream through a quarter-mile in 21.66 seconds and a half-mile in 45.56.

Mapp Hill, with Larry Melancon riding, moved first, launching his bid on the far turn and reaching contention turning for home while swinging very wide. Despite losing some ground, Mapp Hill lost no momentum, reaching the leaders inside the furlong pole and forging to the front.

Lead by Example rallied between horses and finished well, but was no match for his stablemate.

Cojet, the second choice, finished third, with favored Balkan checking in fourth.