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Trainers Block, Janks add to PSF resume
By John Leusch | Daily Herald Staff
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Published: 6/19/2010 9:20 PM

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Chris Block and Christine Janks are the two winningest trainers of the Prairie State Festival, which was held for the 11th time at Arlington Park.

They each added another victory Saturday in the Illinois-bred showcase event that includes six $100,000 stakes.

Chris Block scored a record 16th festival win when his Shrewd Operator sprinted home a 21/2-length wire-to-wire in the White Oak Stakes, the penultimate PSF event.

In the nightcap, Christine Janks won her ninth PSF event when Big Looie captured the Springfield Stakes by 21/4 lengths for owners Steve and Diana Holland of Long Grove.

"I had to get one out of the day," Block said with a smile after the 6-year-old Shrewd Operator won for the seventh time in 15 starts. "This a great showcase for all the people here, the owners, breeders, local trainers and jockeys.

"Look at all the full fields and competitive races. It's great for the industry and great for Arlington Park."

Black Tie Affair Handicap: Coming from last in the eight-horse field, 11-1 longshot My Sonny Boy prevailed by a nose after a stirring stretch duel with morningline favorite and runnerup Princeville Condo.

Trained by Michele Boyce and owned by William Stiritz, My Sonny Boy won his fifth race in 22 career starts.

Isaac Murphy Handicap: Secret Kin exploded in the final eighth of a mile to take a 11/4-length victory over Kip Berries. The 6-year-old mare, owned and trained by Michael Stidham, won for the eighth time in 29 starts.

Lincoln Heritage Handicap: Cumulonimble is owned by the Two Bucks To Show stable, but the 4-year old filly did much better than run third.

Despite starting from the outside No. 11 post, she tucked in second behind 51-1 front-runner Pretty Slic Chick and took over in the stretch for a 3/4-length win over Peyote Patty.

Jockey Michael Baze steered the 7-5 favorite, who is handled by Wayne Catalano, Arlington's top trainer.

Purple Violet Stakes: Heavenly Lass caught Sweet Lemon Chello in the final sixteenth to earn a 11/2-length victory under jockey Brandon Meier.

Trained by Rusty Hellman, the 3-year-old Heavenly Lass won for the second time in seven starts.