Friday Free Horse Racing Picks and Strategy: Late Pick Four Sequence at Aqueduct

Friday's free horse racing picks from handicapper Andrew Champagne comes to us from the late Pick Four sequence at Aqueduct.
Andrew Champagne |
Fri, December 3, 8:17 AM EST | 4 min read
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Friday Free Horse Racing Picks and Strategy: Late Pick Four Sequence at Aqueduct

Friday’s card at Aqueduct includes a Pick Six carryover of more than $288,000. That sequence also includes the late Pick Four, which may draw a bigger pool because of the interest in the Pick Six. I’ll attack it with a $22.50 ticket, and here’s how I’ve put it together.


We’ll start off the sequence with an optional claiming event for New York-bred sprinters. I’ll go three-deep, and my top pick is a bit of a price on the morning line.

#3 MONEY IN THE BANK reeled off five wins in a row after being claimed in January. He’s run just once since July, but he returns to a track where he’s enjoyed plenty of success. His best effort is certainly good enough to win this, and anything close to the 6-1 morning line price would hit me as a considerable overlay.

I’ll also use the two likely betting favorites. #6 BIG BOBBY and #7 GOLD PANDA are no strangers to one another, having met in a September affair at Saratoga. They’ve combined for nine in-the-money finishes in as many career starts, and neither runner would be a surprising winner.


We’ve got a field of nine set to go postward in this $16,000 claimer, and I’ll try to beat lukewarm morning-line favorite #5 GRAN CASIQUE. That runner has been winless in his last 10 starts, and while his last-out effort wasn’t bad, I simply think he’s an underlay at his likely price.

I prefer #3 CAUSE OF ACTION, who won at Aqueduct twice earlier this year. His lone effort since March saw him run into Baby Yoda, whose next start was a sensational score. If he runs back to his early-2021 efforts, this 8-1 shot has a big chance, and there seems to be plenty of early speed signed on that should set things up for his late kick.

#6 JOYCEE HAZ PIZZAZ and #8 CREA’S BKLYN LAW are on my ticket as well. The former’s last two races are pretty solid, while the latter returns to a level similar to the one he topped two starts ago at Belmont.


I need to spread in the third leg, a $25,000 claimer for turf horses that looks like a very classy event. Your guess is as good as mine with regard to which of these runners will go favored, and I’m going five-deep.

I’m very surprised #4 MO READY is 6-1 on the morning line. He takes a big drop in class for aggressive connections, and it was just a year ago that he ran third in the Grade 1 Belmont Derby. It’s likely he’s not the same horse he was then, but he doesn’t have to be in order to beat this group. I expect that price to drop, and he’s my top pick (though a tepid one).

I’m also using #2 SUMMER TO REMEMBER, #5 VETTORI KIN, #8 OUTRAGEOUS BET, and #10 MATTY’S EXPRESS. Vettori Kin is another surprising price. He’s 12-1, but his last start over this track was a win at this level and route back in April, and he exits a winning effort in late October (albeit one that came against a weaker group).

RACE #10

I can afford to spread in the ninth (and, to a lesser extent, in the seventh and eighth) because my best bet of the sequence runs in the Friday nightcap. Unfortunately, this filly won’t be a big price, but I simply think she’s much the best.

#3 SHE’S THE ONE hasn’t done much wrong in three starts. She was a tough-luck second in her debut going long at Belmont back in May before graduating off a layoff in October and just missing in a photo in her first start against winners. Her speed figures have improved with each start, and given that she’s only run three times, I’m expecting another step forward here. She’s2-1 on the morning line, but I’m hoping we’ve extracted value elsewhere in the sequence so it’ll pay well even if she’s as sharp as advertised.


R7: 3,6,7

R8: 3,6,8

R9: 2,4,5,8,10

R10: 3

Andrew Champagne is a horse racing handicapper with a specialism in juveniles. One thing is for certain, Champagne gets the party started.


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