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Steve Matthews' Aqueduct selections for Monday, Feb. 17

Best bet: RUDE AWAKING (6)

Best value: BLUEBLOOD (5)

FIRST: Ms. Malevolence holds an experience edge in six-horse field with four newcomers. Masons Friend concluded work tab with crisp half-mile drill; follow the money. Smart Set is another first-timer with swift works; happy hunting.

SECOND: Honor Way drops after late-running third in Interborough Stakes last time; added furlong plays to strength. Stand for the Flag is fresh and hails from Jason Servis stable; dangerous. Jennemily was a determined winner in last; right in the thick of this.

THIRD: Cowtown was a clear-cut second in last; price won't get pulse racing, however. Awesome Party is an uncoupled barn mate (Todd Pletcher) of top selection; improvement expected. Distorted Sky was just a length behind Cowtown when a sharp third in last; must be factored into the mix.

FOURTH: Tale of Mist was pace- and position-compromised last time; call based on price potential. Who's in Charge fired swift half-mile work since wire-to-wire win in last; very dangerous. Mister Bobby took backward step in last after much-improved third in prior; don't ignore.

FIFTH: Blueblood gets class relief and rider upgrade in second start since two-month absence; forward move predicted. Malibu Action displayed improved speed in last and now makes third start of form cycle; very playable. Scarf It Down could be ideally positioned in the stalker's seat in wide-open group; worth long look.

SIXTH: Rude Awaking was a front-end maiden winner in last and projects as the controlling speed once again. Officer Hutchy, second in last two, could be in the garden spot if top selection hits the wall in the lane; runner-up at short ticket again? Vibrancy makes first start since claimed by Steve Asmussen; must consider.

SEVENTH: Ella's Song was done in by sizzling splits last time; gets there on Monday with more judicious handling. Bustin to Please was a front-end winner in last at Laurel; big-time player. Trouble for Skylar exits solid placings in last two starts; logical, short-priced threat.

EIGHTH: Arthur's Hope exits top-figured score in last; likely short price is the problem. Eye Luv Lulu is speedy, rested and hails from Jason Servis stable; dangerous. P J Advantage could impact at juicy ticket if pace meltdown ensues.

NINTH: Double Shot is training with a purpose for first start since June; throw deep in wide-open nightcap. More Graytful, a likely underlay, has finished second at short odds in both starts; you've been warned. Dangerous Edge owns speed and adds blinkers; serious, front-running threat. Devil's Code is one of nine newcomers in field; tote watching a must.

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