With a choice of two feature races, we were going with the second race, the Tiller, far more interestng than the fourth, the Key Cents, just on field size alone. But in good conscience, I couldn't, not knowing which of three uncoupled Chris Clement entrants to use.

We opted instead for the Key Cents, a small field, but with an opportunity to beat another Clement-trained favorite, Miss Valentine (7-5), with second choice Opus A. (2-1) in the day's fourth race at Belmont. Simple reason.

Just as it appeared lone speed Bodemeister had the best chance to win the Preakness, so, too, is Opus A. suitably spotted. Freshened by Rick Violette, she may not have the affinity for the surfa that the favorite has but clearly is a mile specialist, as her (5) 2-2-1 slate attests.

So, 123 pounds and all, we're taking Opus A. to win at 8-5 or greater.

Running Totals: (1081) 332-211-161 Total Dollar Return: $2,285.90 [win selections only