Aqueduct Picks: Gotham S. Saturday on March 5
Aqueduct Picks - Saturday, March 5, 2022
Race 1: 5-1-7-6
Race 2: 4-2-6-3
Race 3: 3-5-1-4
Race 4: 9-3-1-7
Race 5: 4-1-6-5
Race 6: 6-3-2-4
Race 7: 2-1-8-6
Race 8: 5-7-1/1A-6
Race 9: 2-5-6-4
Race 10: 9-5-10-8
**Most Likely Winner: Officiating #3 (Race 3)**
**Best Value: Bustin Shout #5 (Race 8)**
With 2 minutes to their arrival at the gate ... NYRA’s Aqueduct Racetrack has their Winter Meet rolling along; despite at times, battling tough weather conditions. The Derby Trail is heating up there with today's Gotham S. (G2). That means that the Wood Memorial S. (G2) is not far off. Plus, do not forget all of the other NYRA stakes competition that is slated for the rest of the month ... We have 10 competitive races on tap today, and that includes the Derby Points race, and a KYOaks contest, the Busher Invitational S. ... Enjoy!
At Horseracing.net/us we have you covered, including all of the action! It is a good time for some of the best that North American racing has to offer. Stay tuned!
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Most Likely Winner: (Race 3: Officiating #3, 3/1):
This 4-yr-old by Blame has some major ability and should give the rest of this field in the Grade 3 Tom Fool, a run for their money. Trained by the expansive-minded Saffie Joseph, he is looking to upset last year’s winner (who has returned), in Rob Atras’ Chateau #5. I think he has more than just a chance to do it because this sprint/router should enjoy the cutback after he ran 3rd in the Fred Hooper (G3) down at Gulfstream on the Pegasus WC undercard. I am not all that sure this is a tougher spot than that one … especially since this is only a 5-horse field. Manny Franco just needs to keep this one close (maybe 2-3 off the lead), and I think Joseph’s entry can make a go of this one. Looking back at his score in the Mr. Prospector (G3) … that bodes well, shipping up to New York. Joseph … his reach is growing.
Wagering Recommendation: $100 Win, #3
Off-the-Pace Play of the Day: (Race 8: Bustin Shout #5, 5/1):
I want to take a shot with this Bruce Levine-trained speedster because he might be sitting on go. He is one of those “house” horses that stays around during the winter months. With some early foot as an advantage, he might be able to take advantage of a favorable pace scenario that could develop. During last year’s Meet, he was solid at this exact level, and I believe that Trevor McCarthy can guide him to victory. The key will be the middle portion of this race. Move too early … he will use up his gas. Move too late … and there will be just too much ground to make up. Levine is a crafty fellow, and I am hoping this son of Bustin Stones is ready to go on Saturday.
Wagering Recommendation: $100 Bankroll, Graduated Wager WPS #5 ($10-W, $15-P, $75-S)
Spotlight Race of the Day: (Race 10: Dirt, 1 Mile, Gotham Stakes (G3), $300k, 3):
Like most turfwriting pundits, this is the week where I am wishing that the New York Racing Association would get their Kentucky Derby Series in gear when it comes to distances. I have no clue why the Remsen and the Withers Stakes are 1 1/8th? Then the Gotham comes around and the participants are forced to race along a 1-turn mile. It gets better … the Wood Memorial, which was dropped to a G2 a few years ago, is 1 1/8th … hmm … Come on NYRA! You guys have panache … don’t you? I digress … Coming into this G3, the Gotham S., we have a field of 10 that will be in search of Derby “Points” … 50-20-10-5 … to the top-4 … I mentioned earlier in the week, that barring some unforeseen alteration, I would be backing Steve Asmussen’s Morello #9. I stand by that selection … This colt by Classic Empire is not only well-bred, but in a pair of races at Aqueduct he was just magnificent. Peaking at the proper time, the step-up in class in the Jimmy Winkfield $150k was impressive. He cruised down the lane to a score by 5-lengths. Moving up to a mile is not an issue, and I fully expect Jose Lezcano to make a move by the turn, and throttle up. Using him on top is a must. The real question for me is what to do about Bob Baffert’s entry, Rockefeller #10. Winner in the Nashua (G3) two-back, he then tried to make the front in the Sham (G3) at Santa Anita, and could not keep pace with stablemate Newgrange. Now traveling “Back East,” with T-Mac aboard, he is going to try and make amends. I honestly do not think he has the ability to win in this spot. Still, this is Baffert, so using him is a must. As for one other entry, I particularly like Todd Pletcher’s Dean’s List #5. Here is a colt by Speightstown that might be better suited as a sprinter … His talent is undeniable, but he is a need-the-lead-type, and we don’t know how far he can go. Baffert v. Pletcher v. Asmussen … what a trio! Here is the bet …
Wagering Recommendation: $2 Trifecta Box, 5/9/10
Enjoy a Gotham Stakes Day from the “Big A!” Best of luck on another run at Aqueduct! Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter … Horseracing_USA !!!