Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 9:52 AM

Sunday's Picks from Aqueduct and Gulfstream Park

We enter the last day before the Christmas break at Aqueduct with some good momentum after hitting the early Pick 4 and Pick 5 yesterday.

I had complained I had whiffed on both Pick 5’s on Friday despite having several good prices in the sequence, and I guess the Racing Gods knew I still had a little Christmas shopping to do.

The early Pick 5 looked as if he might start off chalky with Back Channel being bet down to 1-5. However, my top pick Risk Model pulled off the mild upset, paying $8.50.

My top pick Pleasure Luck ($16.20) won the second race, then my second choices Invaluable ($3.80) and Forever Changed ($11.60) won the next two races.

My top pick By George won the final race of the sequence paying $12.20. If you played a .50 cent ticket using my top two picks in each race (a $16 ticket) you received a $2,523.50 windfall.

Doing the same on the early Pick 4 would have cost $8 and returned $397.75.

I gave some of it back as the latter half of the Big A card was not kind to us and I whiffed on both stakes in yesterdays’ column, so overall a good day that ended on a bit of a sour note.

After today’s card at the Big A we have a 10-day break with racing returning on Dec. 31. I can’t go 10 days without a little action so I am sure I will have my Best Plays Report posted next weekend.

My Best Plays Report for today includes my nine strongest plays from Aqueduct and Gulfstream Park including all of the stakes action.

You can stream the action from Aqueduct today on YouTube or by using the TVG App. The horse betting company based in the U.S. is offering a 50% deposit match up to $250 .

To purchase my Best Plays Report for Sunrday click here .

Now is the perfect time to purchase my Monthly Package. It gives you a month of Aqueduct Reports daily and my Best Plays Report each Saturday and Sunday.

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


Race 1 Md Sp Wt

  • #7 Home for Christmas 9-2
  • #5 Teetotaler 5-2
  • #1 Chasing Cara 9-5
  • #10 Stormi Cat Lady 8-1

Analysis: Home for Christmas switches to dirt for the first time here in her third career start. She was eighth in her debut going seven furlongs and showed some improvement with a fifth last out going long. The third-place finisher Mendham came back to graduate in her next start on Dec. 11 here. Pedigree wise she seems better suited for dirt. The $230,000 Spa purchase is by Shanghai Bobby out of a Latent Heat mare that has dropped two other runners with one winner. Clement has been very live with juvies this year.

Teetataler was sent off at 4-1 in her debut for the Brown barn. She raced near the back of the back after breaking inward coming out of the gate and was not a threat in an eighth-place finish. She stretches out to a mile here for a trainer that is 32% winners with second out maidens. She is bred to go long, the $500,000 purchase is by Uncle Mo out of the stakes winner Artomis Agrotera ($943,800) who was best sprinting and has dropped one other foal to race, stakes winner Chestertown who won the state bred Albany in September going nine furlongs. Blinkers are added and she should give a better account of herself here.


Race 8 Md Sp Wt

  • #6 Neuro 4-1
  • #9 Not Phar Now 9-2
  • #2 Rift Valley 5-2
  • #11 Ernie Banker 6-1

Analysis: Neuro is back on the main track after a decent third last out going long on turf, beaten 1 1/4 lengths. The colt was fifth two back at seven furlongs over a wet track, beaten 1 1/2 lengths. Three back over a fast dirt surface going seven panels he rallied for the runner up spot behind repeat winner South Africa. His first five career starts came on turf so that effort three back is his lone go over a fast dirt track. Willing to give him another look here. He is out of the stakes winner My Dinah ($450,391) who was best on dirt and who has dropped two winners including stakes winner Lover's Key ($278,752).

Not Phar Now makes his third start off the bench here for the Rice barn. He came with a good late rally off the bench two back over a wet track to run second. Last out he chased the early pace and weakened to finish fifth in the mud. He looks capable of better than his last and owns a solid pace profile throughout with the edge in late pace numbers. He is out of a stakes placed Discreet Cat mare that has dropped two other foals to race, both winners, top earner stakes winner Out of Orbit ($319,328). He looks like a good fit here and the 9-2 morning line looks fair enough.


Race 7 Md Sp Wt

  • #9 Shannon 10-1
  • #8 Unbridled d'Oro 3-1
  • #3 Zaajel 7-2
  • #1 Tayet 10-1

Analysis: Shannon makes her second career start here for the Matz barn. She was 6-1 in her debut at Laurel Park where she came with a mild late run to finish fourth in a decent effort. The third-place finisher Marvella Nasty came back to graduate in her next outing on Dec. 10 for a $40,000 tag. This gal should appreciate the extra ground here. The barn is 21% winners with second out maidens. She is out of the stakes winner Sweet Belle ($307,649) who has dropped six other foals to race, five winners including stakes winner Fact Finding ($388,151).

Unbridled d'Oro is one of two firsters in here sent out by Pletcher who is 21% winners with first timers. Here at Gulfstream Park dating back two years the trainer has hit at a 23% clip with debut runners. This gal has a nice pedigree, by Medaglia d'Oro out of the G1 stakes winner Unbridled Forever ($805.287), this her first foal to race. A steady string of works at Palm Beach Downs should have her ready to go here.


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: #10 Stormi Cat Lady 8-1
  • R3: #3 Charlotte Webley 8-1
  • R10: #1 Tapizerance 30-1
  • R10: #6 Ryan’s Cat 8-1

Good luck today!

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