Player Quick Pick: Aqueduct for 12/14/2014

D.S. Williamson

December 14th, 2014

Two-year-olds take to the inner track in Sunday’s feature at the Big A, the Damon Runyon stakes at 1 mi. and 70 yards for a purse of $100,000. The morning line favorite is the undefeated Regal Minister, but a full field of 12 is expected, meaning that settling on short odds may not be the way to go.

Aqueduct Racetrack 8 | 3:43 pm ET

Damon Runyon Stakes for 2yr olds going 1 mi. 70 yds

1 – Masons Dream – 20/1 – Gregory Sacco trains this huge overlay morning line shot that goes into this race off a good looking maiden score at the $55,000 state-bred special weight level. Masons Dream was sired by Kentucky Derby winner Super Saver. With Lemon Drop Kid on the dam side, there’s no doubt that this 1 win and 2 second place finishes from 3 races two-year-old will love the added distance of this stakes race. The rail is winning at 23% and although this one doesn’t appear to have a lot of speed, he could find himself behind a wall of horses looking for the lead as soon as they break from the gate. Masons Dream closed into a 48.4 half mile at 6 furlongs to break his maiden in his last. He could easily keep within shouting distance, maybe only 3 lengths off, before jockey Gabriel Saez waits for an opening and punches him through first to the wire at what should be huge odds.

3-Saint Joseph – 3/1 – The Chad Brown two-year-old sired by Flatter also broke his maiden in his last race. Even though Saint Joseph figures to be close to the pace like many in here, he’s the pick to get it done out of the front-runners. Saint Joseph has learned from race to race. His first was a terrible eighth place finish by 22 lengths as a 2.70 to 1 odds horse. Then, in his second race Saint Joseph finished fourth by only 1.25 lengths as the chalk. Going off as the even money chalk in his third race, Saint Joseph showed more maturity by sticking close to a 22.4 first quarter in a 7 furlong race and then inching clear in the stretch. If he improves any more, he could run these off their feet. Jockey Irad Ortiz Jr. is riding very well at the current Aqueduct meet.

12-Good Luck Gus – 5/1 – Jockey Ruben Silvera is going to have to make out a decent trip after breaking from post-position 12, but he might have the two-year-old to do it with. Good Luck Gus, who is bred to run all day with Lookin At Lucky on top and a Deputy Minister mare on the bottom, lost all hope as a 75 cents on the dollar favorite in the $100,000 Notebook stakes in his last after bumping at the start and being used up early to get into position. Silvera figures to see what the speed does in front of him before possibly heading down the rail and hoping for a clean trip to the top of the stretch and then looking for room. Trainer Rudy Rodriguez is one of the best in New York. Don’t look past, but expect decent odds because winning at this distance from post-position 8 on at this meet hasn’t happened in 18 races.