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SportsHorseracing

Steve Matthews’ Belmont selections for Thursday, May 10

Best bet: THE QUEENS JULES (1)

Best value: LA NATUREL (9)

FIRST: The Queens Jules moves to grass after earning fast late-pace figure when winning debut on Turfway’s Polytrack; handles surface switch. Up the Ante was conditioned in a dirt sprint last time; improvement expected. Vegas Kitten was a determined maiden winner on grass at Keeneland last time; be no surprise.

SECOND: Gypsy Jo pressed solid fractions when breaking maiden by more than nine lengths last out; more to come. Isotope should pack enhanced kick with cutback to 6 furlongs; dangerous. Hexameter regressed in last after fast-figured second in prior; rebound threat.

THIRD: Best Surprise projects as the controlling speed in first start since gelded. Miles of Humor tallied improved final fraction when a game second in last; very playable. Diplodocus owns fast figures on best efforts but has failed as the favorite in four of last six starts; you’ve been warned.

FOURTH: Outrageous Bet wheels back in a hurry after hard-charging third in last; added furlong plays to strength. Callant moves to grass with fast dirt numbers; very interesting. Summer Mischief owns two seconds and a third in three starts on Belmont grass; must consider.

FIFTH: Madame Barbarian gets confident class hike after strong second in last; call based on price potential. Clairvoyant Lady delivers solid efforts with machine-like consistency; likely favorite. Stay Fond drops and owns swift back numbers; don’t ignore.

SIXTH: Starlite Mission notched rapid final fraction when a clear-cut second in first grass start last out; needs scratches to get in. Grand Banks, also below the AE line, was a willing second in last; dangerous. Union Patriot was a tough-trip sixth in last; very interesting. Danielle’s Pride is rested and owns fast late-pace figures; must be factored into the mix. Theaterinthe round is training with a purpose for first start since last June for Chad Brown; be no surprise.

SEVENTH: Fillet of Sole needed last, drops and fired half-mile bullet since last start; forward move predicted. Beyond the Green is fresh and owns fast figures on best efforts. Sparty Boy returns to dirt and gets rider upgrade; must consider.

EIGHTH: Malibu Stacy is speedy, adds blinkers and should capitalize on unchallenged lead with aggressive ride. Rubilinda owns fast final fractions and is training sharply for first start since November for Chad Brown; big-time player. Weekfair gets Lasix for U.S. debut for Christophe Clement; follow the money.

NINTH: La Naturel logged five tightly grouped workouts for first start since 53-day layoff; all systems go. Goldmakesmesmile rallied for third after rough start in last; worth long look. Ragtime Suzy is speedy and returns to maiden-claiming ranks; very dangerous. Kickin Kimberly is working swiftly for first start since November; right in the thick of this.

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