Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 9:51 AM

Friday's Picks from Aqueduct

We are back in action on Friday at Aqueduct and field size appears to be on the improve as just two of the eight races today have fields of six.

Saturday’s card has 10 races with at least seven entered in each race, so while we are racing just three days a week this month, we should start seeing a few more solid betting opportunities.

We have a big day coming up at Oaklawn Park on Saturday with five stakes including the $1 million Rebel (G2) which is a Road to the Kentucky Derby points race.

A field of eight will line up with Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert sending out a solid duo. Baffert has won the Rebel a record seven times including last year with Nadal.

He sends out the 2-1 second choice Concert Tour, who won the San Vicente (G2) in his stakes debut last out going seven furlongs. The colt will be making his first start around two turns.

Hozier (12-1) broke his maiden in his second career start for Baffert going 1 1/16 miles on the main track at Santa Anita. Baffert was seeking a first level allowance race for the $625,000 son of Pioneerof the Nile but could not find one and steps him up in class.

The 9-5 morning line favorite for the Rebel is Caddo River from the Brad Cox barn. The colt won the Smarty Jones over the Oaklawn Park main track by 10 ¼ lengths in his last outing.

The race before the Rebel is the $200,000 Hot Springs, which is not a graded stake but drew the top two finishers of last fall’s Breeders’ Cup Sprint (G1).

The eight-year-old Whitmore (8-5) is going for his fifth consecutive win in the Hot Springs and pulled off the upset in the Sprint last fall at Keeneland at 18-1. He faces C Z Rocket (2-1) who was the runner up in the Sprint, that snapped a five race winning streak since he landed in the Peter Miller barn via the claim box.

I will have selections and analysis for the stakes at Oaklawn Park in Saturday’s Best Plays Report.

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 .  In addition, AmWager is offering up to a $500 bonus for new horseplayers.

To purchase my Aqueduct Report for Friday 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 which include the major Kentucky Derby preps.

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


Race 1 Md $40,000

  • #4 Bella Domenica   8-1
  • #6 Jill's a Hot Mess   5-2
  • #9 Calidad   2-1
  • #1 Know It All Red   6-1

Analysis: Bella Domenica was bumped coming out of the gate, set the early fractions while down along a dead rail and tired to finish a well beaten fifth last out in her first start for a tag in her 10th career start. The runner up Funny Bones Flag came back to graduate in her next outing on Feb. 19 for a $40,000 tag by 6 1/2 lengths. Our top pick was making her first start since landing with the RRod barn. She comes back with blinkers added and the cut back to six furlongs should suit her. Decent value if this gal goes off near her 8-1 morning line.

Jill's a Hot Mess dueled for the early lead and tired to finish a well beaten sixth last out, the third race in a row she was the beaten favorite. The runner up Destinationwnrscir came back to break her maiden against maiden special weight foes in her next start on March 6. The Kimmel trainee has landed in the bottom half of the exacta in 4 of her 8 career starts. She owns solid early and mid pace numbers and the cut back to six furlongs will suit her. 


Race 6 Clm $25,000

  • #1 Deep Sea   9-2
  • #2 Air Attack   7-2
  • #6 Control Group   5-2
  • #3 Kumar   5-1

Analysis: Deep Sea raced at the back of the pack early against $50,000 claimers and was not a threat in a sixth-place finish last out. The gelding caught a racing strip that as kind to inside speed that day. He drops in half in here for a $25,000 tag. His last was his first try at nine furlongs and worth another look here facing easier company for a low profile barn. He is an 11-time winner and is going to end up a fair price in this spot. He beaten non-conditioned allowance foes two back at Philly earning a career top speed fig.

Air Attack prompted the early pace and weakened to finish fifth last out against $20,000 foes going a one turn mile. He was claimed out of the race by the Atras barn that is 32% winners (with a +ROI) first off the claim. He put in a solid effort two back in a runner up finish for this tag at nine furlongs, beaten 1 1/2 lengths while nearly nine lengths clear of the rest of the field. He should over forward off his last outing which will put him in the mix in this spot. 


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: #4 Bella Domenica   8-1
  • R2: #5 Jara   8-1
  • R5: #2 Parade Field   8-1
  • R7: #4 Bustinmygroove   15-1
  • R8: #6 Full of Fire   10-1 

Good luck today!

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