06/02/2009 12:00AM

Coco'sprivatelabel a consistent threat


AUBURN, Wash. - Never worse than second in four career starts, Coco'sprivatelabel will try to keep his streak alive Thursday in the feature race at Emerald Downs. A $15,000 claimer for 3-year-olds that have never won three races, the six-furlong feature will go as the seventh race on an eight-race program that begins at 6 p.m.

Coco'sprivatelabel began his racing career at Emerald last July with a runner-up finish against bottom-level 2-year-old maidens. He came back two weeks later to beat $12,500 maidens by four lengths and then was turned out for the winter by trainer Doris Harwood. An improved horse at 3, he was unlucky to lose his season debut in late April, finishing a fast-closing second after a troubled start. Sent straight to the lead in his next start May 17, Coco'sprivatelabel and jockey Juan Gutierrez blitzed a field of $15,000 claimers, running 5 1/2 furlongs in 1:03.40. Gutierrez has the mount again Thursday.

Ugottabcatty is another top contender. Second behind Coco'sprivatelabel in his most recent start, Ugottabcatty rallied impressively after losing ground at the start and again at the top of the stretch. He was gaining on the winner and could benefit from the additional half-furlong Thursday. Defending Emerald Downs riding champion Seth Martinez has the call for trainer Pat Mullens.

Lucky on the River is undefeated in two starts for trainer Tim McCanna. He got up in the final strides to beat $7,500 maiden statebreds in his career debut on April 24, and ran a similar race to down $7,500 nonwinners of two on May 8. Emerald Downs's leading rider, Ricky Frazier, will ride Lucky on the River.

Inhoc Signo Vinces could be the upsetter in the field of seven. Stakes-tested as a 2-year-old after a front-running victory over $40,000 maidens, Inhoc Signo Vinces has failed to hit the board in his first two starts of 2009. He was forced into a wide trip against a strong field of $25,000 claimers in his most recent start and could benefit from the class relief and a ground-saving trip. Trainer Rigoberto Velasquez has named Debbie Hoonan-Trujillo to ride.

The field also includes Toss'm Again, a two-time winner last summer who was fourth behind Coco'sprivatelabel in his last start; Slewdleview, who was third in the same race after a troubled trip; and Whitney Bridge, who overcame traffic problems to beat $7,500 claimers in his most recent outing.