Carryovers: Churchill’s $20,088 Super High 5, Aqueduct’s $53,640 Pick 6

November 12th, 2023

Handicapper J. Keeler Johnson analyzes a pair of five-figure Sunday carryovers at Aqueduct and Churchill Downs.

Aqueduct, Race 4: $53,640 Pick 6 carryover (1:46 p.m. ET)

Fans of non-jackpot Pick 6 carryovers will be eager to play Sunday’s $1 Pick 6 at Aqueduct, which features a prize pool worth $53,640.

The opening leg of the sequence is the Long Island (G3) for fillies and mares racing 1 3/8 miles on turf. #2 Vergara (6-5) is a logical favorite; two starts back she employed pace-pressing tactics to win the 1 5/16-mile Ladies Marathon (G3) at Kentucky Downs, and back in 2021 she displayed an affinity for Aqueduct’s grass when taking the 1 1/16-mile Tepin S.

But don’t overlook #4 R Calli Kim (5-2). The former claimer has turned red-hot under the care of trainer Brendan Walsh, winning all three of her starts this season. She produced a giant rally to win a 1 1/2-mile allowance at Keeneland last month by 2 3/4 lengths and may prove tough to hold off down the homestretch.

Race 8, the Artie Schiller S. taking place over one mile on turf, is also part of the Pick 6. #1 Pioneering Spirit (7-2) has dominated six of his last eight starts (including two stakes), and his two defeats came against Grade 1 company. He’s a nice fit for the Artie Schiller, but #8 Masen (4-1) is worth including as backup.

Winner of the Poker (G3) and third in the Fourstardave H. (G1) during a productive 2022 campaign, Masen recently returned from a one-year layoff to finish ninth in the six-furlong Nearctic (G2) at Woodbine. Masen was beaten only 4 1/4 lengths after setting the pace over a yielding turf course and may improve while stretching back out over one mile on firm ground, the conditions over which he’s done his best work.

Churchill Downs, Race 3: $20,088 Super High 5 carryover (2:00 p.m. ET)

Sunday’s third race at Churchill Downs features a hefty $20,088 non-jackpot carryover in the $1 Super High 5.

Race 3 is a seven-furlong maiden special weight for two-year-old fillies who brought a final bid of $50,000 or less at their most recent auction. Nine horses have been entered, and the eight experienced runners bring largely uninspiring form lines to the table.

So what if we favor the first-time starter #1 Mo’s Vino Mesa (9-2)? She’s a daughter of champion and Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) winner Vino Rosso, whose first crop of foals has already produced the Grade 1-placed juveniles The Wine Steward and Wine Me Up.

Mo’s Vino Mesa is conditioned by Jonathan Thomas, a high-percentage trainer who wins at a 19% rate with horses debuting in maiden special weights. Mo’s Vino Mesa showed potential when breezing a bullet half-mile from the Keeneland starting gate in :47 on Oct. 24, so she looks ready to challenge for victory on debut. In fact, we recommend taking a stand and keying Mo’s Vino Mesa on top in the Super High 5.