12/19/2009 1:00AM

Song of Navarone to seek repeat

Eugene O'Neill/Coady Photography
Song of Navarone is being pointed to the Jan. 9 Winsham Lad at Sunland.

Song of Navarone, who has not lost a race at Sunland Park since 2006, could defend his title in the track's $50,000 Winsham Lad Handicap next month, said his trainer, Henry Dominguez. The one-mile race will be run Jan. 9.

Song of Navarone has compiled a nearly perfect record at Sunland, where he has won 5 of 6 starts, including the $600,000 WinStar Derby in 2007. His lone loss at the New Mexico track came by a neck, in the $136,000 Riley Allison Futurity on Dec. 31, 2006.

Song of Navarone made his most recent start at Zia Park, finishing third as the favorite in the $200,000 Distance Championship at 1 1/8 miles Dec. 6.

"He came back fine, is in good condition," Dominguez said. "We'll keep him here at Sunland and look at the race coming up the first part of January."

In last meet's Winsham Lad, Song of Navarone rallied for a three-quarter-length win. The race kicks off Sunland's handicap series for older horses, which Song of Navarone swept in 2009, when he also won the $50,000 Curribot in February and the $100,000 Sunland Park Handicap in April.

Song of Navarone, a 5-year-old horse by Sultry Song, races for George Coleman. He has won 8 of 18 starts and $745,358.

Dozen QH stakes at La. Downs

Louisiana Downs near Shreveport will offer a dozen stakes for Quarter Horses during a 46-date meet for the breed that begins Jan. 9. The season will run through March 24.

The $100,000-added Harrah's Futurity at 300 yards is the highlight of the 2010 stakes program. It will be run March 20. Last meet, the open-company race had a purse of $260,740. Trials for the Harrah's Futurity are set for March 6.

Other stakes of significance include the $100,000-added Mardi Gras Futurity for Louisiana-breds on March 6. Last meet the race had a purse of $242,222. The Mardi Gras Futurity will share a card with the $50,000-added Mardi Gras Derby. Trials for the futurity are Feb. 16.

Louisiana Downs will open its meet with a stakes double for older horses, with the Harrah's Dash at 250 yards and the Harrah's Distaff at 350 yards. Each is worth $20,000. The track will race primarily on a Saturday through Tuesday schedule during the Quarter Horse meet, with special Wednesday cards on March 17 and March 24.

Evangeline sale set for March 21

Evangeline Downs in Opelousas, La., will hold its annual John Franks Memorial 2-year-olds in training sale March 21, the track announced. At this year's auction, 199 juveniles sold for an average of $8,727. The sales-topper, a colt by Roar of the Tiger named Taylor's Tiger, brought $77,000.

Horses who pass through the ring at the upcoming sale will be eligible for a pair of $100,000 restricted stakes at Evangeline in August 2010. The races will be at 5 1/2 furlongs, one for colts and geldings and the other for fillies. Entries to the sale close Jan. 10.

Franks, a multiple Eclipse Award-winning owner who was based in Louisiana, died in December 2003.