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SportsHorseracingBelmont Stakes

Steve Matthews’ Belmont selections for Wednesday, Sept. 27

Best bet: PAID ADMISSION (1)

Best value: ABIDING STAR (7)

FIRST: Paid Admission gets class hike after decisive win Sept. 17; more to come. Conquest Twister owns fast figures and makes third start of form cycle; very dangerous. Midnight Cello was overmatched last time but is a big-time, front-end threat on prior efforts.

SECOND: Starry Messenger is training strongly for first start since January; primed and ready. Dab returns to main track and owns fast dirt figures; be no surprise. Giant Rocks fired 5-furlong bullet Sept. 5 and is right in the thick of this on “A” efforts.

THIRD: Lady Constance was a clear-cut winner in last and owns faster back figures; pairs up. Andesine owns a win and a second in two starts on Belmont loam; very playable. Isotope makes first start since claimed by Jeremiah Englehart; worth long look.

FOURTH: Twofer moves to grass after logging solid final fraction in dirt debut; handles surface switch. Data Dependent was a tough-trip fourth in first start for Chad Brown; obvious threat. Sweet Offer was a much-improved fourth when switching to sod last time; developing and dangerous.

FIFTH: Honor Up logged two half-mile works since front-end second in last; rates close call. Smokin Platinum regressed in last after fast-figured placing in debut; bounce-back threat. We Should Talk makes first start for high-powered Horacio DePaz barn; stay tuned to the tote.

SIXTH: Violet Blue broke maiden on Belmont grass at spring/summer meeting and logged tight work tab for first start since 56-day freshener. Church Social also is rested and training with a purpose and owns solid late kick on best efforts. Dovecote was a fast-figured second in last and has hit the board in all four starts; logical, short-priced player.

SEVENTH: Abiding Star gets confident price boost after front-running win Sept. 10; more in the tank. Slim Shadey also jumps in class after winning two in a row; very dangerous. Shalako is fresh and owns fast late-pace figures on “A” efforts.

EIGHTH: Dr. Shane is riding a forward line on the numbers and should offer generous price in wide-open turf dash. Animal Posse took backward step in last after hard-fought win in prior; rebound threat. Excluded owns three wins on Belmont grass and gets favorable cutback to sprint; very interesting.

NINTH: Millies Party Boy tallied rapid late-pace figure when a better-than-it-looks fifth in last start; first start since gelded seals the deal. Gosilently notched very fast final number when a game second in last; very playable. Appealing Briefs was just a nose behind Gosilently when third on Aug. 31; right in the thick of this. Catch a Cab, fourth in same race as second and third selections, should improve in second start in more than yearlong layoff.

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