11/25/2005 12:00AM

Zarb's Dahar continues his streak

Email
Louis Hodges Jr.
Zarb's Dahar winning his 10th straight at Louisiana Downs Thursday.

In a remarkable streak, Zarb's Dahar will be looking for his 11th straight win over the Louisiana Downs main track on Dec. 10, when he starts as the favorite in the $100,000 Louisiana Champions Day Sprint.

He picked up win No. 10 on Thursday in the $75,000 , run at Louisiana Downs this year as part of the Fair Grounds meet that moved north in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.

Zarb's Dahar was a dominant 5 1/4-length winner of the race, pushing his Louisiana Downs record to 10 for 11.

"I've never had one like this before," said James Hodges, who trains Zarb's Dahar for Foxwood Plantation. "It's a nice experience."

Zarb's Dahar first raced at Louisiana Downs on Oct. 16, 2003, and finished seventh in a maiden race. Hodges took over the horse's training a few races later, and the Louisiana Downs streak was born on May 16, 2004, when Zarb's Dahar won an entry-level allowance at the track. He went on to roll a perfect meet, winning another allowance in June, three optional claiming races between July and September, and the Cajun Stakes in October.

This year, Zarb's Dahar has added four more Louisiana Downs wins to his resume, capturing an allowance in June, the Folklore in August, the Cajun in September, and the Thanksgiving. All of his local wins except one have come at the six-furlong distance of the Champions Day Sprint, while his combined margin of victory at Louisiana Downs is 30 3/4 lengths.

"He's been good to us," said Gerard Melancon, who has been aboard for all of the horse's wins at Louisiana Downs.

In his career, Zarb's Dahar has won 11 of 23 starts and $326,075.

A return to dirt for Witt Ante

Witt Ante is right on schedule to make his next start in the $150,000 Louisiana Champions Day Classic, said his trainer, Larry Robideaux. He won the 1 1/8-mile dirt race last year, and will enter this year's running off a second-place finish in a deep turf allowance last Sunday.

"He runs okay on the grass - he tolerates it - but he's a better dirt horse," said Robideaux, who trains Witt Ante for David Beard.

Witt Ante has won six stakes and $575,057, and was named champion older Louisiana-bred in 2004.

Leestown Light, another stakes-winning statebred owned by Beard, won the $50,000 Sarah Lane's Oates for 2-year-old fillies on turf last weekend. She is something of a Mighty Mouse, and will likely make her next start routing against Louisiana-breds, said Robideaux.

"I bet she doesn't weigh 600 pounds," he said. "She's maybe about 15 hands, but her heart is as big as she is."

Leestown Light, a daughter of Leestown, rallied from eighth for a head win in the Sarah Lane's Oates.

"It was her first time on the grass and she didn't negotiate the first turn too well; therefore, she dropped pretty far back," said Robideaux. "Then she got herself together and she came running. Needless to say, I'm super pleased with her.

"She brought us another dimension going long on the grass. I think she'll run on the dirt, but going long should be her cup of tea."

Promising babies win Thursday

Ashley Brilliance ($3.20) was a 6 1/4-length maiden winner for trainer Tom Amoss on Thursday. The 2-year-old filly is by Cherokee Run, and her dam is a half-sister to Bet on Sunshine, a 14-time stakes winner who earned $1.4 million.

Glen Warren and trainer Andrew Leggio won a pair of 2-year-old races on Thursday with Gracie's Gem ($3.80) and Hud's Playmate ($17.60). Warren bred both horses.