01/16/2003 12:00AM

Delta Downs: Two tests for Kool K.J.


Kool K.J., who defeated some of the best Louisiana-bred fillies in training by five lengths last out in the $100,000 Louisiana Champions Day Lassie, will face two new challenges in the $50,000 Creme De La Creme at Delta Downs on Saturday night: two turns and the undefeated Letithappencaptain.

The Creme De La Creme, a 6 1/2-furlong race around two turns, has drawn a field of eight 3-year-old statebred fillies, and should produce starters for the $100,000 Green Oaks Handicap at Delta on Feb. 23.

Kool K.J., ran a breakout race last out in the Lassie, pushing the pace early then taking over in the stretch in the six-furlong stakes at Fair Grounds on Dec. 14.

"She ran a powerful race," said Bret Thomas, who trains Kool K.J., for Marty and Jimmy Evans. "She's getting better and better."

Since then, Kool K.J., has trained sharply at Delta, and Thomas feels her tactical speed will allow her to secure good position early as she negotiates two turns for the first time Saturday.

"Two turns is a different race, as we all know, but I don't think it will be a problem for her," said Thomas. "She's got such a kind way about her; she's got enough speed to put her where you want to."

C.J. Woodley has the mount on Kool K.J., while Kirk LeBlanc will ride Letithappencaptain, who has won both of her career starts impressively.

Letithappencaptain defeated statebred maidens in the slop by 8 1/2 lengths in her debut on Dec. 12, then returned to win a seven-furlong conditioned allowance for statebreds by 4 1/2 lengths on Dec. 29. She is trained by W.J. Zeringue.