08/16/2006 11:00PM

'Costa' attempts six in row


Costa Rising is one of four horses who bring significant win streaks into Saturday's $1.3 million Louisiana Downs Champions Day program. A slate of 13 stakes for Louisiana-bred Thoroughbreds and Quarter Horses, the card is the richest of the meet.

Costa Rising will be seeking his sixth straight win when he goes in the $100,000 Louisiana Breeders' Derby, the same mark Calista Ridge will be shooting for in the $100,000 Matchmaker. Between those attempts, Zarb's Dahar will be bidding for his fifth consecutive win when he starts in the $100,000 Cajun. Angelas Toast will also be going for five in row, in the first race, which is one of five stakes for Quarter Horses.

The Breeders' Derby, at 1 1/16 miles, drew 10 runners. The race could serve as Costa Rising's springboard to the biggest race of the meet.

"Depending on how things work out Saturday, we might be looking at the Super Derby," said Joseph Boxie, who trains Costa Rising for Charles Castille Jr.

But the first order of business is keeping the streak intact, said Boxie. Costa Rising is moving back to dirt for the Breeders' Derby following a turf win in the $52,000 A.L. Erwin at Louisiana Downs on July 21. He won that race going wire to wire, but has stalked the pace with success before and might utilize that tactic with a couple of quick colts breaking to his inside Saturday.

"This horse can go on the lead, and he can come from out of it," said Boxie. "It really doesn't matter."

Costa Rising began his win streak in April, when he won his two-turn debut in an allowance at Evangeline Downs. His string has since included wins in two turf stakes and one dirt stakes. All of the victories during the streak have come around two turns and in races for horses bred in Louisiana.

Castille purchased Costa Rising privately last year, after he won his debut in a 2-year-old race at Evangeline in July.

"We had a nice horse in the race with him, a colt by Stephen Got Even, by the name of Swampbiscuit," said Boxie. "He outran me by three or four lengths, and I knew our horse could run."

Swampbiscuit went on to win his next start by seven lengths.

Costa Rising will break from post 6 under Mario Reyes.