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Homeracing

Keeler Johnson's picks and plays Aug. 3

Profile Picture: J. Keeler Johnson

August 3rd, 2022

Handicapper J. Keeler Johnson shares picks and plays for Wednesday, Aug. 3 at Colonial Downs and Horseshoe Indianapolis, along with horses to single in carryovers at Canterbury Park and Presque Isle Downs.

Today’s special offers from TwinSpires include:

  • Assiniboia Downs $1,000 Pick 4 Hit It and Split It: Hit the Pick 4 at Assiniboia Downs on any day from Aug. 1-3 to earn a share of a $1,000 daily jackpot. Hit the Pick 4 all three days to earn a share of an additional $2,000 jackpot.

Picks and Plays

Colonial Downs: Race 3: Maiden Special Weight (one mile, 2:41 p.m. ET)

#4 High Fashion Lady (3-1) didn’t show much in her debut sprinting six furlongs at Churchill Downs last month, trailing a 12-horse field early on before passing a few rivals to finish seventh by 9 1/4 lengths. But even in defeat, High Fashion Lady earned a 66 Brisnet Speed rating that tops Wednesday’s field.

Stretching out in distance can help High Fashion Lady produce a more competitive effort for trainer Kenny McPeek, who wins at a solid 16% rate with second-time starters. We’ll bet High Fashion Lady to win and key her over #2 La Tache (8-5) in the exacta.

  • $20 to win on #4 High Fashion Lady
  • $10 Exacta: 4 with 2
    Total: $30

Horseshoe Indianapolis: Race 8: First Lady S. (one mile, 6:07 p.m. ET)

#10 Climber (5-1) misfired in the Ellen’s Lucky Star S. over the Horseshoe Indianapolis turf course last month, finishing sixth. But her dirt form is solid—two starts back, she trounced the 1 1/16-mile Hoosier Breeders Sophomore S. by 5 1/2 lengths over #1 Louder Than Words (3-1) and #4 Holy Justice (5-1).

That victory produced a flashy 89 Brisnet Speed rating, the highest figure in the First Lady field by seven points. If Climber bounces back to peak form while returning to dirt, she can once again beat Louder Than Words and Holy Justice to the winner’s circle.

#2 Lil Evie (4-1), an improving sprinter stretching out in distance, is another runner worth including in the trifecta.

  • $20 to win on #10 Climber
  • $5 Exacta: 10 with 1,4 ($10)
  • $2.50 Trifecta: 10 with 1,4 with 1,2,4 ($10)
    Total: $40

Horseshoe Indianapolis: Race 9: Governor’s S. (one mile, 6:38 p.m. ET)

#4 Mowins (6-5) faltered when stepping up in class for the Indiana Derby (G3) over this track last month, finishing fifth. But two starts back, he trounced Indiana-bred rivals in the 1 1/16-mile Hoosier Breeders Sophomore S. at Horseshoe Indianapolis, winning by 5 1/4 lengths with a 91 Brisnet Speed rating that tops Wednesday’s field.

Dropping back down in class can send Mowins to the winner’s circle over Hoosier Breeders Sophomore S. runner-up #3 Mr Chaos (6-1) and Snack S. winner #5 Jeopardy Theory (30-1).

  • $20 Exacta: 4 with 3
  • $10 Exacta: 4 with 5
    Total: $30

Carryover Watch

Presque Isle Downs, Race 4: $1,667 Pick 5 carryover (2:51 p.m. ET)

The Wednesday card at Presque Isle Downs treats bettors to a $1,667 carryover in the 50-cent Late Pick 5.

Looking for a single to build tickets around? One of the best opportunities comes in Race 4, a $5,000 claimer for fillies and mares racing one mile on Tapeta. The morning line favorite is #7 Nevisian Spirit (8-5), and the seven-year-old veteran looks like a perfect fit for this race.

Nevisian Spirit boasts a flashy 7-4-1-1 record at Presque Isle Downs, and she’s actually won four of her last five starts in $5,000 claimers over this track. She went 3-for-3 against this company last season and recently kicked off 2022 with a runner-up finish in a $5,000 claimer, beaten only a neck after advancing into a slow pace.

Nevisian Spirit is eligible to step forward in her second run of the season, and she’s retaining the services of Presque Isle’s leading jockey Pablo Morales, a 27% winner this meet. If Nevisian Spirit brings her A-game, she can prevail as a short-priced single.

Canterbury Park, Race 4: $5,806 Pick 4 carryover (7:40 p.m. ET)

It isn’t common to see Pick 4 carryovers pop up, but no one managed to assemble a winning ticket across the final four races at Canterbury Park last Sunday, which means there’s a $5,806 prize pool up for grabs in the 50-cent wager on Wednesday.

The opening leg of the sequence is Race 4, a $10,000 starter optional claiming taking place over 6 1/2 furlongs on dirt. There’s plenty of speed in the entries, which should suit #4 Kierkegaard (5-2) just fine.

Kierkegaard hasn’t missed the exacta in four starts at Canterbury this season. He rallied to win a pair of $7,500 claimers sprinting six furlongs on June 16 and July 3, then wheeled back on July 13 to finish second in a $12,500 starter optional claimer, closing from midfield to lose the 6 1/2-furlong dash by only 1 1/4 lengths.

The latter effort marked Kierkegaard’s first start for hot trainer Karl Broberg, a 29% winner this meet and a 22% winner with horses running for the second time under his care. Kierkegaard brings solid Brisnet Speed ratings to the table and figures to receive precisely the setup he needs to rally to victory.

Good luck!

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