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Steve Matthews' Aqueduct selections for Saturday, Dec. 29


Best value: TWISTED TOM (8)

FIRST: Midnight Entree adds blinkers and is training sharply for first start since moving to Rudy Rodriguez barn; main speed. Brazen Prince runs late and could be in the catbird seat if top selection wilts in the lane. Mid Day Image flashed improved early foot in last start; very interesting.

SECOND: Oneballnostrikes makes quick return and owns swift back numbers; rates close call in cellar-level claimer. Becker's Galaxy drops and makes peak start of form cycle; dangerous. Wicked Freud makes dirt debut with fast turf numbers; mixed message.

THIRD: Catania Rose is 0-for-19 but lands in woeful group; weakness of field is selection's strength. Frederica needed last and should be favorably positioned near the front; dangerous. Saturdaynightfling is rested and hails from streaking John Toscano stable; must consider.

FOURTH: Maimo regressed in last after fast-figured score in prior; bounces back on Saturday. Call Me has trained sharply since determined win last month; very playable. Big Thicket wheels back in a hurry after even sixth in first start since six-month absence last time; improvement expected.

FIFTH: Alisio exits fast-figured placings in first two starts; timid call in race that's jammed with newcomers. Solent debuts for Chad Brown; need more? Enjoyitwhilewecan, an uncoupled barn mate of top selection, concluded work tab with half-mile bullet; could be the goods.

SIXTH: Forever Changed tallied swift late-pace figure when winning second in a row last time; keeps on giving. Take Me to Hardoon has worked three times since strong third in first start since seven-week layoff last out; worth long look. Sassy Agnes owns three wins and two seconds from six starts; logical, short-priced player.

SEVENTH: Jump Ruler did the dirty work up front when a game second in last; capitalizes on softer pace flow in this dynamic. Indy Union drops and packs potent kick on best efforts; very playable. D J's Favorite makes quick comeback after front-end score just eight days ago; razor-sharp and very dangerous.

EIGHTH: Twisted Tom owns fast late-pace figures on best efforts and is working sharply for first start since August; primed and ready. Winston's Chance exits sprints and starts from the fence; front-running threat with aggressive ride. Mr. Buff is riding a two-race winning streak and owns speed and swift numbers; right in the thick of this.

NINTH: There He Goes is fleet-footed, drops and projects as the dominant speed. Cross Multiply was a late-running second behind an eight-length winner in last; stretch threat again. Flat Out Jayvien was just two lengths behind second selection after making wide run in last; must consider. Causforcelebration is another stretch runner that could impact if pace meltdown ensues.

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