Best bet: SPECIAL STORY (8)
Best value: AWESOME QUICK (5)
FIRST: Lake Party moves to grass after hard-charging second in last; more to give. Espresso Caliente fired crisp 5-furlong work for first start since April 28; very playable. Double Deep switches to turf in first start for Robertino Diodoro; very interesting.
SECOND: Ripe made relentless move when breaking maiden in first start on Belmont loam; pairs up. Anything Pazible is riding a forward line on pace and final figures; big-time threat. Money Laundering could play out as the controlling speed in first start since last summer; must consider.
THIRD: Bon Heir is 1-for-1 at Belmont and notched 5-furlong bullet in final work for return from two-month layoff. Lipstickonmycollar also is 1-for-1 at the Big B and can win from on or off the pace; very dangerous. Special Dividend returns to NYRA circuit after even fourth versus pricier field at Monmouth on June 3; don’t dismiss.
FOURTH: Jolie Bay, a tough-trip fifth in debut on Gulfstream dirt, is from a dam that has produced two grass winners; surface switch is the key. Atchata was a useful third in debut and hails from potent second-out stable (Steve Asmussen); could easily take this. Fairfield is from a dam that has thrown a turf winner and could make forward move on new footing.
FIFTH: Awesome Quick compiled eye-catching work tab for first start since November and is a three-time winner on Belmont sod; call in contentious field. Animauxselle packs solid late kick and could receive advantageous setup in field with ample speed. Factoring also owns strong stretch wallop and has fired bullets since winning last; very dangerous.
SIXTH: Take Charge Aubrey notched swift pace and final figures when a strong second in last; more to come. Party in the Sand didn’t join the party until deep stretch when fourth in debut; don’t ignore. Quietly Quick adds blinkers and moves to dirt for Christophe Clement; very interesting.
SEVENTH: Home Run Maker moves to grass after logging solid final fraction when a determined maiden winner in last; handles surface switch. Pagliacci wheels back in a hurry and returns to preferred footing after failing to handle dirt last week; improvement expected. Battle Station is quick from the gate and can prove to be a very tough customer on an unchallenged lead.
EIGHTH: Special Story notched improved internal numbers in last and stretch out in distance plays to strength. Fiery Opal makes quick return after top-figured score at Parx on Saturday; very dangerous. J J’s Dreaming is fresh and owns fast figures on “A” efforts.
NINTH: Trinni Ninja is riding a forward line on late-pace and final figures; weakness of field is selection’s strength. Seam was a clear-cut second in last; big-time player. Saturdaynightfling logged tight work tab for first start since October; wake-up potential. Flash Me Not is speedy and returns to dirt; must be factored into the mix.