Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 9:52 AM

Sunday's Picks from Aqueduct and Churchill Downs

My top picks in both of the featured races yesterday were on the lead but not when it counted the most, at the wire.

Risky Mandate set the early fractions in the Chilukki (G3) at Churchill Downs but ran out of gas as the favorite Finite got the job done and paid a chalky $4.40.

My top pick in the Red Smith (G3) at Aqueduct  Ziyad chased a hopeless 151-1 longshot, took over the lead heading for home and looked as if he would get the job done at 9-2. However, he got run down late and had to settle for third.

Overall it was still a good day at Aqueduct which included White Frost getting the job done in the sixth race as my top pick paying $16.20. My fourth choice in the race was the first timer Lijana who went from a 12-1 morning line up to 23-1. The $2 exacta paid a hefty $402.00.

Using my top two picks over my top four, which would cost $12 a race produced three other exactas that returned $62.00, $64.50 and $19.80.

We have a pair of New York Stallion Series races on tap at Aqueduct today. We have another solid 10 race card with plenty of big fields except for the stakes.

The only short field is the first New York Stallion Series race, the Thunder Rumble. That race drew a field of five led by the 6-5 morning line favorite Funny Guy.

The ninth race is the other Stallion Series race, the Staten Island. The race drew a field of seven with the Linda Rice trained Prairie Fire the 8-5 morning line favorite.

As you can see below, I am going to try and beat her with Sadie Lady, one of two sent out by trainer Rob Atras.

My Best Plays Report for Sunday includes my eight strongest plays from Aqueduct and Churchill Downs.

You can catch the action from Aqueduct and Churchill Downs today at 11:30am to 4:00 ET on FS1 and 4:00 to 5:30 on FS2.  In addition, you can stream the action on YouTube or by using the TVG App. The horse betting company based in the U.S. is offering a risk free bet up to $300 for new players.

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

Now is the perfect time to purchase my Monthly Package. It gives you a month of Belmont Park Reports daily, my Best Plays Report each Saturday and Sunday and my two-day Breeders’ Cup Reports.

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


Race 1 Md $40,000

  • #7 Kith   12-1
  • #8 Vermont Billy   5-2
  • #10 Amistad   3-1
  • #2 Bold Gem   4-1

Analysis: Kith was beaten double digit lengths in his first two starts which came on turf at 5 1/2 furlongs and then a mile. He returned last out off a two-month break and put in a solid effort on the main track, rallying to finish third, beaten a length. He looks on track now and willing to give this guy one more look on turf. He is out of a stakes placed Saarland mare that has dropped three winners and two have won on turf. Decent value here if he goes off near his 12-1 morning line.

Vermont Billy makes his first start on turf here in his third career start and first for Maker who is 17% winners first off the claim. Last out in the slop here he set the early fractions over a speed friendly racing strip and got caught late, beaten a neck. He has a decent enough turf pedigree, out of an Unbridled's Song mare that has dropped two other foals to race, both dirt winners, top earner stakes winner Leofric ($951,140). Irad takes over and this gelding has some early zip. 


Race 6 Clm $50,000N2L

  • #6 Rob the Rich   5-2
  • #1 Takafumi   6-1
  • #7 Spin Rate   6-1
  • #5 The Feature   7-2

Analysis: Rob the Rich was off a beat slow last out in his first go against winners, chased the early pace and weakened to finish fourth versus $40,000 starter allowance foes. He broke his maiden two back at Indiana Grand by 5 1/2 lengths in a good looking effort. That outing was flattered with the runner up and third place finisher breaking their maidens next out while the fourth-place finisher ran second in his next start. The gelding is on the improve for the Matthews barn and Talamo sticks. He looks tough in this spot.

Takafumi tracked the early pace while saving ground and finished gamely in a runner up finish last out against $40,000 non-winners of two at Keeneland. The outing was his first trip on conventional dirt. He graduated on the fake stuff at Arlington Park last summer. He owns the top last out speed fig and may still have some upside making just his second start on dirt.


Race 9 The NY Stallion Staten Island

  • #7 Sadie Lady   7-2
  • #3 Officer Hutchy   2-1
  • #5 Prairie Fire   8-5
  • #1 Espresso Shot   4-1

Analysis: Sadie Lady makes her first start since July where she set the early pace and weakened to finish third versus open Alw-2 optional claimers. The Atras barn is on the light side with layoff types, hitting at a 11% clip with runners coming back off a 61-180 day break She is back in restricted company here. She owns the edge in early and mid pace numbers and if Kendrick can shake loose early, she may prove tough to catch.

Officer Hutchy is one of three in here that exits the state bred Iroquois where she stalked the early pace and finished evenly in a fourth-place finish, beaten 2 3/4 lengths. She won a NY Stallion Series race two back in her first start for Atras. The barn had claimed her for $25,000 three back out of a win versus non-winners of three. She has landed in the exacta in all four of her trips on the Big A main track including a second in a NY Stallion Series race here last December in the mud. She completes a tough duo sent out by Atras but her stablemate is going to end up a better price. 


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. 


  • R1: #7 Kith   12-1
  • R2: #4 Joy City   15-1
  • R4: #10 Kitten’s Romance   8-1
  • R5: #5 Nebo   15-1
  • R6: #8 Microscope   12-1
  • R7: #2 Sidd Finch   10-1
  • R8: #1 Mike’s Girl   8-1

Good luck today!

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