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Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 14:04 PM

At the Gate - Friday

I thought it could be a very chalky day on Thursday at Aqueduct as my Live Longshot list consisted of just two runners, and while we did not see any bombs, it still turned out to be a good day.

We knocked down six winners on top on the nine-race card. The winners returned $2.80, $8.70, $5.40, $9.10, $9.60, $7.70.

Friday’s card could be somewhat on the chalky side as well. I have a few short prices as my top picks but there are some strong longshots underneath and if a few of those run well we can still catch some nice exactas.

I touched on the two Derby preps briefly yesterday and II will have selections for both Derby points races and the major stakes action in Saturday’s Best Plays Report.

In addition to the $200,000 Lexington (G3), Keeneland offers up the $350,000 Jenny Wiley (G1) and the $200,000 Ben Ali (G3).

Closing day at Oaklawn Park features the $1 million Arkansas Derby (G1) as well as the $750,000 Oaklawn Handicap (G2) and the $400,000 Count Sleet Sprint handicap (G3).

At Aqueduct the features are the $100,000 Bridgetown and the $100,000 Plenty of Grace.

Sure, it is Friday the 13th today but I like the card at the Big A and I am not that superstitious.

To purchase my Aqueduct Report for Friday click here.

Here is the opening race from Aqueduct to get the day off to a good start:

AQU Race 1 Md $40,000 (1:20 ET)

6 Sweet Connie Girl 3-1

4 Bogulator 9-5

8 Windjammer 6-5

7 Cleo 10-1


Analysis: Sweet Connie Girl makes her first start since last summer for the Chad Brown barn that is 25% winners with runners coming back off a +180 day layoff. She checked in seventh in her first go for a tag, beaten five lengths. The $150,000 Ocala purchase is by Lemon Drop Kid out of a Silver Deputy mare that has dropped two dirt winners but no turf winners to date. Castellano keeps the call, and this is not a real tough looking spot for her return.

Bogulator finally drops in for a tag here and makes her 15th career start and she has six runner up finishes. Last out she tracked the early pace and finished evenly in a fourth-place finish in the mud. Last year she put in a couple of good efforts on turf at Gulfstream Park including a tough nose loss. She is out of a Known fact mare that has dropped five turf winners. She fits here on the class drop for Hennig.

Wagering:
WIN: #6 to win at 5-2 or better.
EX: 4,6 / 4,6,7,8
TRI: 4,6 / 4,6,7,8 / 4,5,6,7,8

Today’s Featured Race of the Day from Aqueduct:

AQU Race 8 OClm $62,500N2X (5:17 ET)

1 Sandy'z Slew 8-5

6 English Minister 7-2

5 Blackout 3-1

3 Spectrolite 9-2


Analysis: Sandy'z Slew returns off a 3 1/2 month break after checking in fifth in the Janus last out at Gulfstream Park. The gelding earned a career top speed fig two back beating state bred Alw-2 optional claimers over good ground here. Englehart claimed this guy for $40,000 last August at the Spa. He won at this condition at Belmont Park back in '16. Good works on the morning tab for a barn that is 21% winners with runners coming back off a 61-180 day layoff.

English Minister cuts back from a mile where he tired to finish seventh last out against Alw-3 other than or a race on turf in six months at Gulfstream Park. He drops into an easier spot here and won at this condition last fall at Belmont Park at six furlongs. His last two turf sprints were solid and should be fit and ready to go off works at Fair Hill for the Trombetta barn that is 22% winners (with a +ROI) moving runners from route to sprint.

Wagering
WIN: #1 to win at 8-5 or better.
EX: 1,6 / 1,3,5,6
TRI: 1,6 / 1,3,5,6 / 1,3,5,6,7

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
R1: #7 Cleo 10-1
R3: #3 Vicar’s Legend 8-1
R4: #7 Daddy’s Home 8-1
R7: #4 Heart in Hand 8-1
R7: #2 Whyamisolucky 20-1
R9: #9 Sunblock 12-1

Good luck today!

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