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SportsHorseracing

Steve Matthews' Aqueduct selections for Friday, April 9

Best bet: THRUSTER (8)

Best value: MALTHAEL (7)

FIRST: Dazzle Time was second to a repeat winner last time; gets job done on Friday. Lemon Drop Road is fresh, sheds the blinkers and adds Lasix; dangerous. Absolute Courage has trained swiftly in South Florida; could be the goods.

SECOND: Gringotts drops and returns to distance of victory two starts back; forward move predicted. Blitchton Lady owns speed and fast back figures; dangerous. Jara exits five-length score in last; right in the thick of this.

THIRD: Simbasalltrouble moves to grass after improved third in last; more to give. Dreampoint makes first start since gelded; very interesting. Unlikely fired 3-furlong bullet since middle move and flatten last out; worth long look.

FOURTH: Latin Love Bug returns to more appropriate level after wide trip in overnight stakes field last time; call based on price. Indian Counselor logged determined score the first time he touched Big A loam; very dangerous. Tapizearance makes first start since claimed by Karl Broberg; must consider.

FIFTH: Perceived consistently logs the field's fastest final fractions; solid recent work tab seals the deal. Time to Testify fired crisp half-mile work and tallied solid numbers on SoCal sod last year; big-time player. Shootin the Breeze is more than good enough on "A" efforts; don't ignore.

SIXTH: Continuation owns fast late-pace figures and is training consistently for first start in 10 weeks. Cousin Andrew has finished second in all three starts; runner-up again? Ajhar fired 5-furlong bullet since failing to get the job done when 35 cents on the dollar last out; recoups losses on Friday?

SEVENTH: Malthael looms the speed of the speed with aggressive ride in contentious turf field. Emaraaty could be in the catbird seat if pace meltdown ensues. Good Governance is another that would be aided by fast fractions.

EIGHTH: Thruster should pack enhanced kick with cutback to 6 furlongs; addition of blinkers is the clincher. Confectioner owns speed and should be favorably positioned near the front in bulky field. Sixteen Tons, from a dam that has produced three turf winners, makes first grass start for Linda Rice; dangerous. Bourbon Rising moves to grass and makes first start since gelded; must be factored into the mix.

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