01/21/2006 12:00AM

Business as usual for Team Block

Lou Hodges Jr.
Fort Prado, ridden by Robby Albarado, gives Team Block its fourth victory in the Fair Grounds Breeders

Fair Grounds at Louisiana Downs? There's no difference, as far as the Illinois-based owners Team Block are concerned. Team Block won the three years in a row when it was run in New Orleans, and they won it again Saturday in Bossier City, La. Only the horse was different.

While the three-time Fair Grounds BC winner Mystery Giver rehabs in south Florida from serious injury, Fort Prado proved a perfectly capable substitute this season, turning the tables on Onthedeanslist, who had beaten him last out in the Colonel E.R. Bradley Handicap on this same grass course.

Fort Prado ($9.20), rallying gamely after a rail-skimming trip under Robby Albarado, switched leads at about the sixteenth pole and chugged past pacesetting Onthedeanslist to win by a neck. It was another half-length back to late-running Waupaca, while favored California invader Chinese Dragon checked home fifth, with no apparent excuse. Raised to Grade 3 status this season, the $189,800 Fair Grounds BC gave Fort Prado, a Team Block Illinois homebred, his first graded stakes victory.

While trainer Chris Block has presided over Fort Prado's career-long development, Fort Prado has been trained since shipping into Louisiana Downs late last year by Jeff Trosclair. Trosclair forecast an improved performance in the Fair Grounds BC, and he already has figured out Fort Prado.

Onthedeanslist got away with a 49.20-second opening half-mile when he won the Bradley, but his half-mile split this time was 48.53, and even with the quicker pace, Fort Prado raced closer to the lead this time. Squeezing through a gap along the inside turning for home, Fort Prado crept closer to Onthedeanslist, and finally pushed past in deep stretch. He ran 1 1/16 miles on firm turf in 1:43.16.

Ladies: The Beter Man Can prevails

The Beter Man Can ($2.40) was not as brilliant as she had been in two previous wins this winter, but she took care of business in the $107,400 Lagniappe Ladies Stakes, winning by two lengths over the longshot Catlaan, with Raspberry Wine third.

The victory gave The Beter Man Can 8 wins in only 12 career starts. She has won all five of her races over the Louisiana Downs track surface for owner Stan Seelig and trainer Pat Mouton.

Jockey E.J. Perrodin took a rating hold on The Beter Man Can out of the gate, but she was always prominent from the rail post. Bonita's Reinbeau ranged up on the inside to take a brief lead on the backstretch, but The Beter Man Can moved back in front on the far turn and never was threatened. She was timed in 1:45.85 for 1 1/16 miles on dirt.

Crescent City: 'Nob Hill' wins photo

Mouton won his second stakes of the day when Nob Hill Deelite ($8.80) captured the $105,900 by a head in a three-horse blanket finish. Pace setting Big Herm edged Willtosucceed for the place, while favored Desert Wheat was a distant fourth. Nob Hill Deelite now has won four races in a row, including two stakes and a division of the Louisiana Futurity.

* All Wired Up led from start to finish, posting a 4 1/4-length win in the $104,050 Lagniappe Sprint Stakes.