08/18/2003 11:00PM

Two separate win streaks on the line


AUBURN, Wash. - Lot of Hope and Michelle's Cap will try to keep their winning steaks alive in Thursday's feature at Emerald Downs, a one-mile race for fillies and mares to be run under $3,200 starter allowance conditions.

Thursday's headliner, which offers an enhanced purse of $7,000, is the latest installment of the Stanislaw Ashbaugh Series, which rewards the lower-level claiming horses that are essential to most race meets.

Both Lot of Hope and Michelle's Cap are shooting for their third straight victories, but Lot of Hope might be preferred off her proven ability at a mile. Lot of Hope, a 4-year-old daughter of Son of Briartic, defeated $5,000 nonwinners-of-two company here July 20, running a mile in 1:38, then returned to score over $3,200 nonwinners-of-three foes at six furlongs on Aug. 2.

Northern California rider Kevin Krigger, who will begin riding here on Thursday, has the call from trainer Terry Gillihan at 122 pounds. Krigger rode here briefly last year, winning with 3 of 22 mounts.

Michelle's Cap finished out of the money in two previous tries at a mile on dirt, but she also ran second in a turf mile at Golden Gate in March - and she is racing in extremely sharp form. Michelle's Cap, who was claimed earlier this meet by trainer Jose Navarro, edged $4,000 claimers two races back, and then scored a 6 1/2-length win in $3,200 company last time out, on Aug. 7, timed in 1:17.20. Gallyn Mitchell retains the mount at 122 pounds

Five others are in against Lot of Hope and Michelle's Cap in the feature, the seventh of eight live races on a card that begins at 6 p.m.