Trainer Chris Block, the leading conditioner in Prairie State Festival history, tallied two more stakes victories in the ninth Illinois-registered series at Arlington Park June 21.
The 41-year-old Champaign, Ill., native won two of the six stakes -- the $88,400 Purple Violet Stakes with Apple Martini and the $93,950 Springfield Stakes with Amazing Results.
Apple Martini, who races for the Virginia H. Tarra Trust, saved ground early and rallied in the stretch to get up for a three-quarter length victory in the one-mile Purple Violet, getting the distance in 1:36.76 while returning $7.80, $4.40 and $3.
Rene Douglas rode the daughter of Giant's Causeway .
Team Block’s Amazing Results, also ridden by Douglas, finished strongly to capture the one-mile Springfield Stakes by a length over Mr. Mischief in 1:35.48. The son of Grand Slam paid $6.40, $4 and $3.40.
Trainer Christine Janks, who ranks second in career Prairie State Festival tallies, found the winner’s circle with Arbaway Farm, Carson Springs Farm and David Campbell’s Mighty Rule in the $86,400 White Oak Handicap, scoring by a half-length in 1:09.27 for the six furlongs. The son of Gilded Time was ridden to victory by James Graham and paid $8.80, $4.40 and $3.
In other Prairie State Festival races, Charles Sigrist and Del Sol Farm’s Lady Lionel ($8, $4.20 and $3) survived a claim of foul by Jesse Campbell, the jockey of runner-up Royal Leah, to win the $97,350 Lincoln Heritage Handicap by 1 3/4 lengths in 1:44.48 under jockey Junior Alvarado. The victory was the first in Festival competition for both Alvarado and trainer Moises Yanez and the first ever stakes win for Sigrist. Lady Lionel is a daughter of Lucky Lionel.
Nick Mamatas and John Kerber’s Gentleman Chester, who won last year’s $88,300 Springfield Stakes, made a three-wide move into the stretch and held off the late charge of three-time defending champion Fort Prado to win the $92,950 Black Tie Affair Handicap by 1 3/4 lengths under Campbell. The son of 2000 Arlington Million (gr. IT) winner Chester House is trained by Ralph Nicks and ran the 1 1/16-mile journey over “good” turf in 1:43.09. He paid $15.20, $5.80 and $3.60.
In the first of the afternoon’s six stakes races, the $86,500 Isaac Murphy Handicap, Hall of Fame jockey Earlie Fires guided Richard Rudolph and Michael Vranich’s Magnetic Miss to a front-running 1 3/4-length victory over Taylor Madison. The Spanky Broussard-trained daughter of Deposit Express covered the six furlongs in 1:09.78 and paid $8, $4.60 and $3.40.
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