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SportsHorseracingBelmont Stakes

Steve Matthews’ Belmont selections for Saturday, May 26

Best Bet: SHE’S DREAMIN (7); Best Value: MICKEY T (10)

FIRST: Playwright returns to maiden claiming ranks and owns fast back figures. Latin Love Bug earned improved pace figure in last start; dangerous. Rumbles of Thunder is training with a purpose for first start since November; must consider.

SECOND: Markitoff has met graded stakes fields in last three starts; rates close call. Decisive Triumph was a game second at 12-furlong marathon distance last time; dangerous. Classic Covey has trained swiftly since third behind two next-out winners last out; big-time player.

THIRD: Gio Lucky logged improved internal numbers in last and should be forwardly placed in weak field. Ride on Faith was a clear-cut second when favored at Keeneland last time; fails to get job done again? Curlin’s New Moon drops and returns to dirt; must consider.

FOURTH: Major Force was pace and position compromised when fourth last time; improvement predicted. Charnley River is speedy and training sharply; very playable. River Knight also is fleet-footed and will offer juicy ticket; don’t ignore.

FIFTH: Third Son compiled tight work tab for first start since October; takes this if all is well. Ten Twenty Nine runs late and could be the prime beneficiary if pace meltdown ensues. Polar City is quick from the gate and could play out as the swiftest of the swift.

SIXTH: Desert Light tallied fast late-pace figure in debut and gets the call if able to escape AE list. Curlin’s Legacy compiled solid training tab for switch to sod; price will be tempting. Appealing Briefs owns fast final figures but hasn’t found winner’s circle in 12 starts; fails as the favorite once again?

SEVENTH: She’s Dreamin logged only career win on Belmont grass and is working swiftly for first start since August; primed and ready. Mentality tallied rapid late-pace figure when a close-up fourth in last; dangerous. Discreet Image is speedy and can prove to be very tough on an uncontested lead; don’t dismiss.

EIGHTH: Breeze Burner is speedy, gets positive surface switch (dirt) and could shake clear at fat ticket. Conquest Twister regressed in last after fast-figured win two starts back; big-time, rebound threat. Nominal Dollars runs late and should pack amplified kick with cutback to sprint. Big Guy Ian is fleet-footed, drops and hails from Rudy Rodriguez barn; underlay potential.

NINTH: Ambassador Jim was a useful fourth in first start since seven-month layoff last time; forward move predicted. Gidu owns two wins and two seconds in four starts; logical, short-priced player. Masked could play out as the fastest of the fast with aggressive ride; must consider.

TENTH: Mickey T notched improved final fraction when a wide third in last; more to come. Blue Pride gets class relief after speed and fade in debut; very dangerous. Causforcelebration was a hard-fought second in first start since five-month absence last out; regresses at short ticket today? Wild William is from a dam that has thrown two turf winners; follow the money.

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