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Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 13:59 PM

At the Gate - Saturday

The feature at Gulfstream Park on Saturday is a good one with a field of nine going one mile on the main track in the $100,000 Hal’s Hope (G3).

The George Weaver trained Breaking Lucky is the 2-1 morning line favorite. The seven-year-old ran second in the Fred Hooper (G3) in his last outing.

I am going to look for more value with the Todd Pletcher trained Copper Town (6-1), who acted up prerace and was beaten 14 ¼ lengths in the Hooper as the beaten favorite.

At the Big A the feature is the $100,000 Franklin Square for state bred three-year-old fillies. Forgotten Hero is the 8-5 morning line favorite and perfect in two starts, but we will attempt to beat her.

Wadadli Princess looks like decent value if she goes off near her 10-1 morning line. The Pat Kelly trainee raced against a strong inside speed bias in her maiden score and looks as if she should be able to move forward off that effort.

There are no Road to the Kentucky Derby points races this week, but then things pick up in a big way over the next month as we are now just over two months away from the first Saturday of May.

My Best Plays Report for Saturday includes my eight strongest plays from Aqueduct and Gulfstream Park.

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To purchase my Aqueduct and Best Plays Reports for Saturday click here.

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

AQU Race 1 Clm $25,000N2L (12:50 ET)
#5 Purchasing Power 7-5
#6 Tiz No Bluff 2-1
#4 I Love Jaxson 6-1
#1 Never Before 9-2

Analysis: Purchasing Power stalked the early pace and finished up well while unable to get to the winner in a runner up finish, catching a racing strip that was kind to speed that day. The Chad Brown trainee earned the top last out speed fig in the effort. The gelding was the beaten chalk in his last pair and is going to be a light price once again here, but this looks like the spot he can get it done.

Tiz No Bluff can complete a chalky start to the day. The gelding returns off a five-month layoff here for the Nevin barn that is 18% winners with runners coming back off a 61-180 day layoff. The gelding owns the edge in early and mid pace numbers and there is not much early speed signed up to go here. He does tend to land for minor shares.

Wagering
WIN: #5 to win at 8-5 or better.
EX: 5,6 / 1,4,5,6
TRI: 5,6 / 1,4,5,6 / 1,2,4,5,6

Today’s Featured Race of the Day from Aqueduct:

AQU Race 8 The Franklin Square (4:26 ET)
#1 Wadadli Princess 10-1
#4 Forgotten Hero 8-5
#3 Stonesinthetrhead 2-1
#6 Flush 3-1

Analysis: Wadadli Princess faces winners for the first time here after breaking her maiden last out in her third career start. In that outing she stalked the early pace after bobbling at the break and came with a good late rally to get up and win by 1 ¼ lengths under the seven-pound bug Hernandez. The racing strip that day was strongly favoring inside speed. Two back she was beaten just a head after a good battle in the stretch, a race that has now produced three next out winners. She is going to get a good pace set up here as there is plenty of early zip despite the short field. She gets a jock upgrade to Lezcano and looks like decent value if she goes off near her 10-1 morning line.

Forgotten Hero is perfect in two starts. She broke her maiden by 5 ½ lengths in her debut at 11-1 and showed that was no fluke by winning a New York Stallion Series race over a wet track in her second career outing. Now she returns off a two month break here and she owns the edge in early and mid pace numbers, but things may not be that easy up front. Solid works since her last outing and she looks like a legit threat but her price may end up on the light side.

Stonesintheroad is perfect in her two starts. She was well backed in her debut in an eight-horse field and drew clear under a hand ride to win by four lengths. She came back against state bred Alw-1 optional claimers last out and wired the field at 4-5, the winning margin 6 ¼ lengths. That was a day speed was tough to beat, six going gate to wire that day. She looks like the main early pace threat to our second choice in this spot. If the two hook up that could set things up nicely for our top pick to come calling late.

Wagering
WIN: #1 to win at 6-1 or better.
EX: 1,4 / 1,3,4
TRI: no play

Today’s Featured Race of the Day from Fair Grounds:

GP Race 11 The Hal's Hope G3 (4:58 ET)
#7 Copper Town 6-1
#3 Breaking Lucky 2-1
#1 Tale of Silence 5-1
#5 Quip 4-1

Analysis: Copper Town acted up in the gate last out in the Fred Hooper (G3) where he was sent off as the chalk after stalking the early pace he packed it in, fading to finish a well beaten seventh. He showed a ton of talent in his first three starts and then popped a 101 Beyer off the bench at the fall Keeneland meeting beating Alw-2 optional claimers. He was beaten double digit lengths in his last two starts in graded stakes company but Pletcher is giving him another shot and we will to. Decent value if he goes off near his 6-1 morning line.

Breaking Lucky prompted the early pace, was taken back and came again in the stretch with a game finish in a runner up finish in the Hooper last out, beaten 1 3/4 lengths for the top spot. Back in '17 this guy was mixing it up with the big boys, a runner up finish in the Cigar Mile (G1) and a neck loss in the New Orleans 'Cap (G2) as well as running third din a couple of starts behind Gun Runner. Last year did not go well in two starts but he appears to be rounding back into top form.

Wagering
WIN: #7 to win at 9-2 or better.
EX: 3,7 / 1,3,4,7
TRI: 3,7 / 1,3,5,7 / 1,3,5,7,9

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
R3: #4 Gypsum Johnny 10-1
R5: #5 Formal Start 8-1
R6: #4 War Tocsin 8-1
R8: #1 Wadadli Princess 10-1
R9: #3 Malibu Action 8-1

Good luck today!

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