Shapazian’s Belmont picks – May 12

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Hopefully you’ve been paying attention, reading and making smart wagers on the selections from The Saratoga Special’s John Shapazian over the first two weeks of the Belmont Park spring-summer meeting. If not fear not, there’s still a lot of time to pad that bankroll before Belmont Stakes weekend and even before Memorial Day.

John picked 15 winners from 27 races during Belmont’s opening stretch and he was 11-for-30 last weekend. That’s 26 winners in 57 races, or 45.6 percent. Yes, you read that correct.

As for this weekend, John advises to make note of the heavy rain in the forecast Saturday and Sunday.

Maybe two-plus inches,” he said. “Makes for tricky handicapping. It’s not often the best horse that wins but the horse that takes to the sloppy conditions.”

Got it?

Here’s John’s picks for Friday, May 12.

Race 1
FULL SALUTE ships up from south Florida into the Linda Rice barn, may go well.  FORMAL SUMMATION is in top form, the one to catch.  MONSTER MASH goes turf to dirt for Carlos Martin.  3-1-6

Race 2
SURPRISE WONDER broke poorly in his debut, should improve.  BADABOOM worked sharply May 7, draws Jose Ortiz.  PRESENCE OF MIND by Trappe Shot may be dangerous.  7-2-5

Race 3
ASSERTIVE stretches out, draws the rail and will take them as far as she can go.  BROOOKLYN GERTY takes on younger foes, will stalk the pace.  MY GOLDEN RULE could take it all if there is a pace meltdown.  1-2-3

Race 4
NONEEDTOFLATTERME was dull is his last effort in the mud, may go well today.  HAPPY MATCH has had some fair attempts.  DUBLIN EXPRESS returns to state-bred maidens.  4-8-7

Race 5
NO HAYNE NO GAYNE adds blinkers, draws Irad Ortiz Jr., must avoid a speed duel with ZEALOUS SCHOLAR, who stretches out.  FIVE STAR RAMPAGE is coming off an improved effort.  1-2-4

Race 6
VINTAGE MATTERS makes his 2017 debut for Michael Dickinson.  INHERITTHEWIND returns to state-breds, gets Javier Castellano.  BLACK TIDE will prove tough if he can replicate his last, may bounce.  6-7-10

Race 7
CARBON DATA has had two drills at Saratoga for Chad Brown, should go well.  ROCKETRY was full of run at Gulfstream, well spotted.  ANY QUESTIONS figures in the mix.  8-2-5

Race 8
HECKUVASHOT may rate off the early pace for Johnny V.  LEX VEGAS will probably be sent for the lead.  DO SHARE could also go well in a closely matched field.  2-1-3

Race 9
PERFORMANCE BONUS threw in a clunker in last, drops in for a tag, timid vote.  THE ZIP ZIP MAN and TIZ SHEA D figure close.  4-2-3