03/13/2006 12:00AM

Sunland Park: Red Lifesaver duels, holds on

Eugene O'Neill / Coady Photography
Red Lifesaver wins the $50,000 Santa Teresa Handicap at Sunland Park on Sunday.

Red Lifesaver jumped right into a duel with heavy favorite Dee Dee's Diner, was able to get the best of that rival, cleared off into the lane, and had just enough left to fend off Blue Song in the $50,000 Santa Teresa Handicap at Sunland Park. Her connections, trainer Steve Asmussen and jockey Brian Peck, swept Sunland's weekend stakes.

A 5-year-old daughter of Victory Gallop, Red Lifesaver covered the 6 1/2 furlongs in 1:17.73 and paid $7.40.

Blue Song stalked the pace and rallied gamely outside to get second, three-quarters of a length back. Dee Dee's Diner dueled with the winner and fell back into the lane, but tried to re-rally and was able to secure third.