Steve Matthews' Aqueduct selections for Saturday, Dec. 17
Best Bet: LES BON TEMPS (7); Best Value: BUSTINO SANTINO (9)
FIRST: Sean the Hammer displayed improved speed in last; breakthrough predicted. Papi On Ice could be the prime beneficiary if pace meltdown ensues. North Pole owns four seconds and seven thirds from 15 starts; lifetime maiden?
SECOND: Handsome Cat was a determined winner in last at Penn National; owns faster back numbers. Bezos is speedy and can prove very tough on a soft lead. Scilly Cay consistently fires big efforts; must consider.
THIRD: Spungie logged dominant victory in only main-track start; tight work tab adds to appeal. Mashnee Girl is fleet-footed and has Kendrick Carmouche aboard; dangerous. Let Her Inspire U owns four wins from eight outings; likely underlay.
FOURTH: Laughter broke maiden in a laugher (13 lengths) last time; yuk it up. Charley Rude was a front-end maiden winner in last at Churchill Downs; dangerous. Mia Bea Star should pack intensified kick with cutba
FIFTH: Twelth Man is training strongly for first start since May; primed. Sheriff Bianco was a top-figured winner in most recent; bounces on Saturday? Vidal could prove very tough on an unchallenged lead.
SIXTH: Assertive Attitude has drilled three times since game placing in debut; rates close call. Tapit Trice logged fast late-pace figure when a wide third in first start; very playable. Summer Cause bested Tapit Trice by more than a length in solid debut; right in the thick of deep maiden field.
SEVENTH: Les Bon Temps has trained with a purpose since clear-cut stakes win on Oct. 30; pairs up. Fema Funds is speedy and gets aggressive class boost; very interesting. Bustin Hot, an uncoupled barnmate of Fema Funds, also is fleet-footed and jumps from maiden ranks; don't ignore.
EIGHTH: Somelikeithotbrown projects as the speed of the speed with heads-up handling. Sea Foam also is quick from gate and adds blinkers; worth long look. Barese delivers strong efforts with machine-like consistency; must be factored into the mix.
NINTH: Bustino Santino tallied rapid final fraction when a tough-trip third in debut; throw deep in wide-open group. Vacation Dance capitalizedon clear-cut lead with "Ussery's Alley" ride; dangerous. Lifetime of Chance bested top selection by nearly six lengths when second on Nov. 12; big-time player.
TENTH: Camm' Duke drops and gets favorable cutback in distance after making premature move to the lead last time; worth another chance. Hot Rod Lincoln compiled tight work tab for first outing since September; must consider. Saratoga Banker dons blinkers and gets class relief; don't ignore.