07/12/2012 3:43PM

Evangeline: South Style looks for repeat in Oak Hall


Southern Style returns to defend his title against eight rivals in Saturday night’s $50,000 Oak Hall Stakes, the seven-furlong feature at Evangeline Downs.

Now 7, Southern Style has not lost a step, as he comes into this year’s edition of the Oak Hall off a gutsy half-length score in the Need for Speed Stakes over the Evangeline grass course. Southern Style also won last year’s Need for Speed when it was contested over the main track. He once again seems to be in top form and will be reunited with jockey Ramsey Zimmerman, who was aboard in the Need for Speed.

Jockey Calvin Borel will journey in from his Kentucky base to ride Crystal Moment for older brother Cecil, who trains the 5-year-old son of Distorted Humor for owner Mary Grum. Crystal Moment finished third in last year’s Evangeline Mile in his only local appearance but is perhaps a better performer going one turn.

Kingsford Drive is another intriguing member of the Oak Hall cast following a sharp five-furlong score in allowance company over the Louisiana Downs turf. Kingsford Drive is making just his third start since trainer Eddie Johnston claimed the 4-year-old gelding for owner Keith Plaisance for $40,000 last summer at Del Mar, then. Louisiana Downs leading rider Richard Eramia travels in to handle the riding chores.