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SportsHorseracing

Steve Matthews' Saratoga selections for Sunday, Aug. 26

Best Bet: MR. FIXIT (1); Best Value: EPPING FOREST (9)

FIRST: Mr. Fixit drops after logging improved pace figure in last; set for career best. Niko Strong is speedy, fresh and training with a purpose. Hokulea was compromised by rough trip in last; worth long look at long price.

SECOND: Irish Intuition earned solid late-pace figure on turf in debut; return to grass is key. Trish the Dish was freshened after useful sixth in debut; forward move predicted. Speedy Solution is speedy and can prove very tough on a soft lead.

THIRD: Wingman was speed sharpened in last; more to give in second start since three-month layoff. Acoustic packs potent late kick and has the benefit of the rail; very dangerous. Tricked Up makes third start of form cycle and owns fast back numbers; right in the thick of this.

FOURTH: Curiousncuriouser was done in by rough journey in last after seven-length win in previous start; rebounds. Hexameter was a fast-figured, front-end winner in last; big-time player. Leah's Dream is speedy and rested; dangerous.

FIFTH: Wheedle noticeably picked up the tempo in final workout; ready at first asking. Into the South has finished second in both starts; continues trend? Malibu Mischief has trained sharply since clear-cut second in debut; must be considered.

SIXTH: Harlan's Hunch projects as the speed of the speed with aggressive rider aboard. Holiday Bonus could be sitting in the garden spot if top selection hits the wall in the stretch. Dr. Edgar consistently delivers strong efforts; dangerous.

SEVENTH: Seeking the Blue compiled tight work tab for first start since two-month freshener; primed. Miss Jen took backward step on yielding surface last time after clear-cut win two races back; bounce-back threat. Way Smart is ultra-consistent; must be factored into the mix.

EIGHTH: Carlino gets class and distance relief after tiring at last; rail draw seals the deal. Souper Tapit endured rough trip when a clear-cut second in last; dangerous. Krewe Chief lost rider in last but is right in the thick of this on "A" efforts.

NINTH: Epping Forest is riding a two-race winning streak and could receive perfect pace setup in bulky field. Chanteline tallied swift internal and final figures when a willing second in last; big-time player. Girls Know Best owns bullet-like speed and could prove very tough on an unchallenged lead.

TENTH: Last Chant wheels back in a hurry after displaying improved speed this past Monday; throw deep in wide-open nightcap. Joe's Smokin Gun has finished second three straight times; runner-up again? Straitouta Congtin is improving and could be aided by added ground; worth long look at long price. Powerstroke's speed gives him a puncher's chance.

New York Sports