Shapazian’s Belmont picks – June 4

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One final card for the weekend and before Belmont Stakes Week gets underway at Belmont Park.

John Shapzian, The Saratoga Special’s leading handicapper, continues to churn out winners from his daily selections and tackles Sunday’s nine-race card. Here are his picks for Sunday. Take care and good luck.

Race 1
SWEETRAYOFSUNSHINE is afforded an edge in Sunday’s opener, consistent runner fresh off the claim looks for three in a row.  SPUN COPPER figures close, will be part of the early pace.  JEMMABELLE drops to a more realistic level after trying starter allowances.  4-3-1

Race 2
PANA ELIANNE makes her second start against state breds, may get a more aggressive ride today.  MADAME AMBASSADOR drops in for a tag, figures close.  FRECKLE FRECK will set the early fractions.  4-2-5

Race 3
If switched to the main oval, GYPSUM JOHNNY will be tough to be beat.  Otherwise on the lawn, TOMBELAINE goes out for Chad Brown with Javier Castellano up.  SIDING SPRING will try and take them all the way on the lead.  DOWSE’S BEACH makes his second start off the bench.  6-4-1-7

Race 4
If washed off the turf, DESIROUS adds blinkers for Danny Gargan.  On turf, CLEO comes back from a 10-month hiatus for Bill Mott, showed some promise last summer at the Spa, drops for a tag, and gets apprentice Hector Diaz.  RARE GEM is probably the horse to beat, draws a tough post. LION IN WAIT came to life in her first attempt on the weeds.  9-1-8-3

Race 5
SPOTTY ZEALOUS disappointed at odds-on last time in a race where he received a less than an ideal ride, switches barns.  OPEN BAR did not get the cleanest trip in his last effort, should go well today.  AMERICAN PIONEER will be a pace factor. 6-7-5

Race 6
DANCING ALLL NIGHT goes out for the Phipps Stable, can boss these.  DEFROCK makes her 2017 debut, has a string of sharp works.  PRESUMPTOUS may get a minor award.  5-4-3

Race 7
I GET SMOOTH seeks his third win in a row, lightly raced son of Munnings has lots of upside potential, must avoid a speed duel with CINDERELA EL CROME.  LUMINARY FLIGHT won in the slop, may take another step forward.  4-5-8

Race 8
TIZ A KITTEN has some fair races in south Florida, drops 13 pounds from her last race, timid vote.  ALABAMA BOUND and AMAZING ANNE figure close in a highly competitive contest.  8-9-12

Race 9
FILIUS SCAT, 4-year-old son of Scat Daddy, debuts for Steve Klesaris, faces a weak group of maidens.  SKEET SHOT drops in class and SOURCE CONTROL would be no surprise.  10-1-9