Shapazian’s Belmont picks – April 30

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The first weekend of the Belmont Park spring-summer meeting comes to a close Sunday and The Saratoga Special’s John Shapazian offers his picks on the nine-race card.

Shapazian, who tabbed an area-based 130 winners in 2016 at Saratoga in The Saratoga Special, will provide race-by-race selections for the weekend cards at Belmont. Here are his picks for Sunday, April 30.

Race 1
DIVERSIFY will take them as far as he can, 2-for-2 at Belmont.  RALLY CRY will be stalking the pacesetter.  ADULATOR attracts Castellano for Jimmy Jerkins.  4-1-5

Race 2
MISSION TRIP disappointed in the slop, another try.  PRIMM’S CUP races as a new gelding has the most upside potential.  UNNAMESINFLUENCE, a 4-year-old firster by Freud, meets a weak field of New York-breds in his debut.  7-5-1

Race 3
BIG HANDSOME took to the weeds at Gulfstream, takes on winners.  ARDMORE BAY worked sharply on April 15; Jose Ortiz rides for Tom Morley.  MONGO NATION goes for three straight.  4-1-3

Race 4
RECKLESS HUMOR has shown some ability on the lawn, timid vote.  MAGSAMELIA and SUMMER HOUSE would be no surprise.  3-9-6

Race 5
ARMY MULE, an $825,000 firster debuts for Pletcher.  THADDEUS entry mate of Army Mule, broke poorly in the off going at Saratoga, newly gelded, adds Lasix.  NEW MOON by Malibu Moon shows a series of good works.  WAGE ACCELERATION broke poorly at 4/5, could improve.  1A-1-7-3

Race 6
GRAND SKY drops in for a tag, the one to beat.  BETWEEN THE LINES is coming off a Rudy Rodriguez claim, dangerous if he takes to the turf.  TIZ A CHANCE has some decent efforts last summer.  4-10-11

Race 7
LITTLEMISSBUSINESS will be tough to beat if she brings her “A” game.  FLICK OF AN EYE claimed by Danny Gargan had trouble in the lane in last effort.  MAMA JOYCE stretches out to a mile.  2-4-10

Race 8
FAIR POINT had a sharp work on April 18, draws Jose Ortiz for her 2017 return.  MISS ELLA is coming off a Grade 3 winning effort at Keeneland.  HIP HOP N JAZZ meets tougher foes.  5-1-3

Race 9
HOMEWOOD FIELD just missed in a sharp effort.  BRIANBAKESCOOKIES switches to the Clement barn, raced well at the Spa.  HARLAN’S HUNCH has high speed.  1-9-12