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Steve Matthews' Belmont selections for Wednesday, Oct. 2

Best bet: ARISTOCRATIC (6)

Best value: SHOCK THERAPY (5)

FIRST: Moondance Joy drops after logging improved late-pace figure in last. Dan's Girl is speedy and could prove tough on an unchallenged lead. Princess Victoria is fresh and owns fast back numbers.

SECOND: Cold Hearted Cat was a tough-trip second in last at Parx; nice fit with the locals at this level. Tarallucci closes in sprints and could be aided by Wednesday's longer trip. Big Expense was an improved fourth in recent race over the Belmont turf; must consider.

THIRD: O'Bushido gets class relief after showing newfound speed in last; set for best. Strong Legacy makes first start with maiden-claiming tag for a trainer that posts strong stats with such moves; very interesting. Managing Risk compiled tight work tab for first start in seven weeks; worth long look.

FOURTH: Cloontia was a determined front-running winner in last; pairs up. Catch a Cab is rested and has notched all three wins on Belmont sod; very dangerous. Hokulea runs late and would be aided by pace meltdown.

FIFTH: Shock Therapy compiled eye-catching work tab for first start in seven weeks; fast late-pace figures on "A" efforts. Michael Dubb entry: Dark Money logged two works since fast-figured win in last and mate Clench also was impressive in taking last; potent pairing. Brush Country, another last-race winner, gets confident price hike; right in the thick of this.

SIXTH: Aristocratic wheels back in a hurry after wire-to-wire score in first start on Belmont loam; more to come. Life in Shambles drops and owns fast back numbers; more than good enough on best. Heavy Roller was a game second in last; must be factored into the mix.

SEVENTH: Lemonist tallied swift final fraction when a strong third in last; amplified kick with cutback to shorter route. Sentry returns to prime time after determined win at Colonial Downs last out; very interesting. Dalarna owns a win and a third in two starts on Belmont turf; don't ignore.

EIGHTH: Take Charge Tina was compromised by slow splits when a late-running third in last; added furlong plays to strength. Questeq gets appropriate cutback in distance after speed and fade in last; very playable. Tiple notched crisp half-mile work since displaying improved speed in last; worth long look. O'Malley overcame rough trip to win last and now makes first start since claimed by Jason Servis; must consider.


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