Keeler Johnson's picks and plays Sept. 5

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September 5th, 2022

Handicapper J. Keeler Johnson shares picks and plays for Monday, Sept. 5 at Monmouth Park and Del Mar, along with tickets for the $3,753 Super High 5 carryover at Golden Gate Fields.

Today’s special offers from TwinSpires include:

  • Assiniboia Downs $1,000 Late Pick 4 Hit It and Split It: Hit the Late Pick 4 at Assiniboia Downs on any Monday from Sept. 5-26 to win your share of a $1,000 weekly jackpot.

Picks and Plays

Monmouth Park: Race 9: Red Bank S. (one mile on turf, 4:14 p.m. ET)

#5 Good Governance (3-1) is 2-for-2 this year, winning a $32,000 allowance optional claimer during the winter at Tampa Bay Downs before returning from a six-month break to nab a $62,500 allowance optional claimer at Saratoga.

The latter race took place over one mile on turf, and Good Governance unleashed a fast finish from midfield to prevail by a head. This lightly raced Chad Brown trainee has placed twice at the graded stakes level in the past, and his A-game should be good enough to win the Red Bank.

We’ll bet Good Governance to win and key him over #4 Mohs (9-2) and #7 Winters Back (5-2) in the exacta.

  • $20 to win on #5 Good Governance
  • $5 Exacta: 5 with 4,7 ($10)
    Total: $30

Del Mar: Race 7: Tranquility Lake S. (one mile, 7:10 p.m. ET)

#6 Samurai Charm (2-1) has only run twice this year, placing in the Desert Stormer S. (G3) and Great Lady M S. (G2) sprinting on the California circuit. But last year, she won a pair of one-mile races over the Del Mar main track, so stretching out in distance shouldn’t be an issue for Samurai Charm.

#3 Teddy’s Barino (5-2) and #4 Velvet Slippers (5-2) have likewise won racing one mile at Del Mar; they’re logical candidates to round out the exacta.

  • $20 to win on #6 Samurai Charm
  • $5 Exacta: 6 with 3,4 ($10)
    Total: $30

Del Mar: Race 9: Generous Portion S. (six furlongs, 8:10 p.m. ET)

#8 Chismosa (5-2) is the logical favorite after opening her career with back-to-back victories at Del Mar, including a 3 1/2-length romp in the CTBA S. sprinting 5 1/2 furlongs.

But don’t dismiss #2 Uncontrollable (3-1) from consideration. Trainer Michael McCarthy isn’t a frequent winner with first-time starters (striking just 8% of the time), but Uncontrollable launched a big rally from behind a fast pace to win her debut in a five-furlong maiden special weight at Del Mar by two lengths.

Uncontrollable capitalized on a favorable pace setup, but if she improves in her second start, she may challenge Chismosa regardless of pace.

  • $20 to win on #2 Uncontrollable
  • $10 Exacta: 2 with 8
    Total: $30

Carryover Watch

Golden Gate Fields, Race 5: $3,753 Super High 5 carryover (6:55 p.m. ET)

Labor Day is shaping up to be a pretty quiet day as far as non-jackpot carryovers are concerned, but at least Golden Gate Fields has tossed up a $3,753 Super High 5 carryover for us to pursue.

At Golden Gate Fields, the $1 Super High 5 is available to play in any race featuring seven or more entries. On Monday, the first suitable event is Race 5, a $50,000 starter allowance taking place over 1 1/16 miles on turf. Precisely seven horses have been entered, which equates to 2,520 possible outcomes.

It’s a tough race to analyze since three of the entrants have yet to win on grass and the remaining four runners boast no more than one turf win apiece. Ultimately, we’ll lean on the two favorites: #5 Stone’s River (2-1) and #4 Rimprotector (3-1).

Stone’s River exits a solid third-place finish in a $20,000 claimer over the Del Mar main track, for which he received a career-best 89 Brisnet Speed rating. He’d previously competed with some success on turf at Del Mar and Santa Anita, most notably overcoming a poor start to wire a $25,000 claimer racing 1 1/8 miles over the Santa Anita lawn.

Stone’s River was claimed out of his latest run by trainer Reid France, who wins at a lofty 29% rate with new claiming acquisitions. Monday’s race marks Stone’s River’s first start at Golden Gate Fields, and shipping away from the tough competition on the Southern California circuit might be all Stone’s River needs to visit the winner’s circle.

As for Rimprotector, he beat only one horse in a $50,000 starter allowance racing one mile over the Del Mar turf course last month, but the three-year-old gelding might find the competition a bit easier at Golden Gate Fields. He was only beaten seven lengths at Del Mar while gaining 2 1/2 lengths through the final furlong and has hot jockey Assael Espinoza (a 27% winner at Golden Gate this meet) in his corner.

#2 Lil Miracle Man (5-1) has hit the board a couple of times against $50,000 starter allowance company at Golden Gate and is a logical threat to do so again.

#1 Salto de Tigre (5-1) has never run on turf, but his form lines are solid—he defeated Lil Miracle Man in a $16,000 claimer over the dirt track at Pleasanton back in June, and he recently finished ahead of Stone’s River when second in a $20,000 claimer over the Del Mar dirt.

#7 You Kidding Me (9-2) showed an affinity for turf last month when rallying to win a one-mile maiden special weight at Santa Rosa. He’s also run well over the Golden Gate lawn and has top-five potential.

Here’s how we’ll bet the Super High 5:

  • $1 Super High 5: 5 with 4 with 1,2,7 with 1,2,7 with ALL ($18)
  • $1 Super High 5: 5 with 1,2,7 with 4 with 1,2,7 with ALL ($18)
    Total: $36

Good luck!