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At the Gate - Thursday

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The odds for Pool 1 of the Kentucky Derby Future Wager were announced on Wednesday, with 23 separate horses along with the 24th choice being “all others” which opened up as the 9-5 morning line favorite.
 
Shanghai Bobby and Violence share top billing at 12-1 among the rest of the field, with four runners listed at 15-1: Overanalyze, Verrazano, Flashback and Itsmyluckyday.
 
I am expecting to see Grade 3 Holy Bull winner Itsmyluckyday and recent optional claimer winner Verrazano take some early betting action when the pool opens on Friday.
 
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Wagering for Pool 1 concludes on Sunday, and keep in mind this pool is pari-mutuel, meaning that odds will change over the three days.
 
Since the wagering is limited to 24, it might be a good idea to shop around for a price, taking a look at some of the leading sportsbooks and see if you can lock in a higher price.
 
What is remarkable about the first pool is trainer Todd Pletcher has seven runners among the top 23, with hall of fame trainer Bob Baffert having four. Nearly half the field is in two barns.
 
I will keep an eye on how the wagering goes and if we can find a few overlays we will report them in Sunday’s column.
 
Aqueduct is back in action on Thursday, now relegated to a four-day race week for the time being. The week starts off with a $36,873 Pick 6 carryover.
 
Here is a complete list for Pool 1 of the Kentucky Derby Future wager:
 
# Name     ML Odds
1. Capo Bastone - 30-1   
2. Code West - 50-1
3. Delhomme - 30-1
4. Den’s Legacy - 30-1
5. Dynamic Sky - 30-1
6. Falling Sky - 30-1
7. Flashback -15-1
8. Frac Daddy - 50-1
9. Goldencents - 20-1
10. He’s Had Enough - 50-1
11. Itsmyluckyday - 15-1
12. Mylute - 30-1
13. Normandy Invasion - 20-1
14. Overanalyze - 15-1
15. Oxbow - 20-1
16. Revolutionary - 20-1
17. Shanghai Bobby  - 12-1
18. Super Ninety Nine - 20-1
19. Uncaptured - 20-1
20. Verrazano - 15-1
21. Violence - 12-1   
22. Vyjack (g) - 20-1
23. Will Take Charge - 30-1
24. All Others - 9-5
 
Click here to purchase my full card report for Aqueduct for Thursday.
 
Purchase my Monthly Package and receive an entire month of Aqueduct action and my weekend Best Plays Reports for just $99.95.
 
Here is today’s opening from Aqueduct to get the day off to a good start:
 
AQU Race 1 Clm $14,000 (12:30 ET)
3 Dissension   4-1
5 E Street Bourbon   2-1
2 Perfectly Anna   7-2
7 Boldchildsrevenge   5-2
 
Analysis: Dissension came with a four wide run and finished up well, rallying for third and beaten two lengths for the top spot in her first start on the inner track. The filly caught a racing strip that as more favorable to horses on or near the lead that day. She broke her maiden two back for a $25,000 tag taking the field gate to wire. She owns a solid pace profile throughout and looks as if she should get a good tracking trip sitting off the pace and good to see Alvarado sticks for another go.
 
E Street Bourbon stalked the early pace from the outside and faded to finish seventh last out against state bred Alw-1 optional claimers. Two back on the main track for a $25,000 tag she was second behind repeat winner Rice to Riches, who came back to beat starter optional claimers in her next outing on Jan. 18 here. The blinkers come back off today and the filly posted a bullet work on Jan. 27. She looks like a good fit here and I like the jock switch here from Castro, who seems to do us few favors to the Cohen.
 
Wagering
WIN: #3 to win at 5-2 or better.
EX: 3,5 / 2,3,5,7
TRI: 3,5 / 2,3,5,7 / 2,3,4,5,7
 
Today's Featured Race of the Day from Aqueduct:
 
AQU Race 7 Md $35,000 (3:18 ET)
3 Al's Rosie   3-1
8 Pure Afleet   10-1
1 High Inflation   5-2
5 Myperfectvalentine    4-1
 
Analysis: Al's Rosie drops in for a tag for the first time here in her third career start. The filly checked in fifth in her debut on turf and last out was down long the inside and did not have enough punch left late in a fifth place finish in her first trip on the inner track. The third and seventh place finisher in her last outing both came back to graduate next out. She catches a softer group here on the class drop in for $35,000. She has three sibs that are winners including a pair of stakes winners, top earner Come Sunday ($270,845).
 
Pure Afleet returns off a two month break and drops in for a tag for the first time here for the Canani barn. The filly was not much of a threat in her first two starts, a sixth in her debut sprinting and then a seventh place finish last out on grass. She adds blinkers here for a barn that has been live at the meeting. She has a decent pedigree, by Afleet Alex out of a Storm Cat mare that has dropped two other foals to race, one winner, Pure Thunder ($53,204). She had a good breeze out of the gate on Feb. 3 and looks as if she is going to be a decent price in this spot.
 
Wagering
WIN: #3 to win at 5-2 or better.
EX: 3,8 / 1,3,5,8
TRI: 3,8 / 1,3,5,8 / 1,3,5,6,8
 
Live Longshots:
These are price plays for exotic players looking to find a couple of extra contenders to use in their trifecta and superfecta wagers. Or for those with smaller bankrolls, you might want to get in a small win-place wager.
 
Aqueduct
R2: #3 Paddy Knuckles   10-1
R2: #1 Got a Hunch   8-1
R4: #6 Van Tassel   12-1
R6: #8 Raffie’s Factor   10-1
R7: #8 Pure Afleet   10-1
R9: #5 Jolienne   8-1
 
Good luck today!

  
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  HORSE RACING EXPERT
  Mike Dempsey
Mike covers the New York racing circuit (Aqueduct, Belmont Park, and Saratoga) year round as well as Keeneland, Churchill Downs, the Triple Crown, and the Breeders’ Cup.
Last Year Mike had a solid Triple Crown, correctly picking the winning horse in 2 of 3 races. He selected I'll Have another to win The Preakness, and nailed Union Rags to win the Belmont Stakes as his top pick.

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