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Steve Matthews' Saratoga selections for Friday, July 16

Best bet: SMOOTH B (1)

Best value: EASY TO BLESS (8)

FIRST: Smooth B gets confident price boost after pressing fast splits when a determined winner in last; more to come. Mihos makes first start since claimed by Brad Cox and will be in the garden spot if pace meltdown ensues. Shashashakemeup was second in most recent and owns fast back numbers.

SECOND: Arms an Armor makes first start with maiden-claiming tag; breakthrough predicted. Quick Return has been second three times in four starts; runner-up again? Brew Pub would be aided by fast fractions; must consider.

THIRD: Chocolate Cookie owns fast late-pace figures and is training with a purpose for first start since October; ready to roll. Dixie Cannon is speedy and starts from the hedge; dangerous. Classic Colors hails from the white-hot Christophe Clement barn; right in the thick of this.

FOURTH: Ballacolla fits the signature Chad Brown profile and tallied solid late-pace figure in debut; double advantage. Lisheen is working strongly for first start in eight weeks; dangerous. Flaming Rouge was a game second at marathon distance last time; worth long look.

FIFTH: Absolute Love won by more than six lengths for this price at Indiana Grand last out; mare has history of stringing winning efforts. Yes I'm Evil has the benefit of the rail with short run into first turn; very playable. Mongolian Humor was an improved second in last; must be factored into the mix.

SIXTH: Kant Hurry Love was compromised by poor start when a late-running third in well-bet debut; timid call in field that's jammed with well-heeled newcomers. November Rein bested top pick by more than four lengths when a game second first out; be no surprise. Let Her Inspire U ($500G purchase) and Tough Street (sharp works) are firsters that demand tote and paddock scrutiny.

SEVENTH: Too Sexy notched swift final fraction when a hard-charging second in last; more to give. Rivendell compiled tight work tab for first start in 11 weeks; worth long look. Miner's Queen set blistering splits when a front-running maiden winner in last; big-time threat.

EIGHTH: Easy to Bless could be ideally positioned in the stalker's seat in field that's top-heavy with speed. Patty H has won three of last four and hails from Brad Cox barn; very dangerous. Bayshore Foxes tallied career-best internal numbers in last; headed in the right direction at a playable price.

NINTH: Rinaldi, 3-for-4 on Spa sod, projects as the dominant speed on the hedge; proper handling needed. Delaware, one of three Chad Brown runners, packs potent late kick; one to be concerned about in the lane. Logical Myth, from Joe Sharp stable, is another that could make an impact in the final stages.

10TH: U Should B Dancing gets the meds after sharp second in last; crisp, half-mile breeze in the interim seals the deal. Candy Monet moves to grass and turns back to sprint after speed and fade in debut; very interesting. Kreesa La Wrote was an even fourth in same last race as top selection; worth long look. Raining Candy owns turf breeding and is working sharply for debut; could be the goods.

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