09/06/2012 2:47PM

Evangeline Downs: Franks Memorial Sales Stakes divisions top closing night card


OPELOUSAS, La. – There is something for everybody on the season’s final evening of racing Saturday night at Evangeline Downs.

The entire class spectrum will be represented, from $3,500 conditioned claimers all the way up to the stakes ranks. Distances will range from a rare 2 1/2 furlongs on the main track to a mile and a half on turf. Even Quarter Horses will get into the act as a pair of Fair Grounds stakes that were lost due to Hurricane Isaac have been moved 100 miles to the west. The 11-race program gets under way at 5:40 p.m. Central.

The Thoroughbred races are topped by two divisions of the John Franks Memorial Sales Stakes. Graduates of the Franks 2-year-olds in training sale held at Evangeline in March will go 5 1/2 furlongs in quest of the $60,000 purse.

The filly division of the Franks will go as the eighth race of the evening and is headed by Suitefriendsofmine. The daughter of Richter Scale comes off a second-place finish in the $131,000 D.S. “Shine” Young Futurity here in late July. She qualified for the “Shine” by winning her qualifying trial in game fashion 3 1/2 weeks earlier. Suitefriendsofmine is trained by Jerry Delhomme and will once again be ridden by Diego Saenz.

I Dare U Em will attempt to bounce back off a disappointing eighth-place finish in the Shine. The Brett Brinkman charge was a front-running winner of her Shine trial and could be the controlling speed Saturday night. Gerard Melancon will be in the saddle.

Fishin Frank and Go Lil Tiger, first and second in the colt and gelding division of the Shine, will renew their budding rivalry in the male division of the Franks. Go Lil Tiger has flattered Fishin Frank since their last meeting by posting a maiden win. Anthony Agilar trains Fishin Frank while Karl Broberg will tighten the girth on Go Lil Tiger. Kerwin Clark and Saenz will handle the respective riding assignments.

Others in the colt and gelding division of the Franks include Parrain, an impressive winner at first asking on the Shine undercard; Proust, a two-time winner including a Shine trial, and Fairy Missile, who adds blinkers off an unplaced effort on the turf in the Sunny’s Halo Sakes at Louisiana Downs.

◗ The rescheduled $264,480 Louisiana Quarter Horse Breeders Association Sale Futurity brings together the 10 fastest qualifiers from the Aug. 15 trials at Fair Grounds. Logans Mountain will be going for his fourth win in a row Saturday night after narrowly accounting for his trial win. Trained by Heath Taylor, Logans Mountain won the Louisiana Juvenile Stakes at Delta earlier this summer. John Hamilton, aboard for all three of those recent wins, returns to the saddle.

Dashin Forward posted the fastest qualifying time for Saturday night’s final and will be going for his third career victory. Trained by Kelli Smith, Dashin Forward will be ridden by Jarrod Deschamp.