Keeler Johnson’s picks and plays of Sept. 13

September 13th, 2023

Handicapper J. Keeler Johnson shares picks and plays for Wednesday, Sept. 13 at Kentucky Downs and Horseshoe Indianapolis, along with horses to play in carryovers at Kentucky Downs and Presque Isle Downs.

Today’s special offers from TwinSpires include:

  • Hoosier Park $10 Money Back: Receive refunds on win bets (up to $10) if your horse finishes second in any eligible race at Hoosier Park.
  • Hong Kong $50 Bonus: Receive a $50 bonus when you wager at least $500 in cumulative bets at Sha Tin (HK) and Happy Valley (HK) during six days of racing in September.

Picks and Plays

Kentucky Downs: Race 8: Juvenile Sprint S. (6 1/2 furlongs on turf, 5:21 p.m. ET)

#2 Jimmythetooth (6-1) has shown promise on turf while competing against New York-bred rivals. He finished third and second in his first two starts sprinting five furlongs against maiden special weight company at Belmont Park, on each occasion finishing behind El Grande O, who has come back to place in multiple stakes. Then Jimmythetooth tackled a 5 1/2-furlong maiden special weight at Saratoga and wired the field by 3 1/4 lengths, earning a sharp 89 Brisnet Speed rating.

None of Jimmythetooth’s rivals have earned a Brisnet Speed rating higher than 85. Tyler Gaffalione (the leading jockey at Kentucky Downs this meet) is retaining the mount for trainer Mike Maker (who has won more races at Kentucky Downs since 2018 than any other trainer), so Jimmythetooth is worth betting to win and keying over #5 Good Lord Lorrie (2-1) and #7 Hedwig (5-2) in the exacta.


  • #2 Jimmythetooth (6-1)
  • #5 Good Lord Lorrie (2-1)
  • #7 Hedwig (5-2)


  • $20 to win on #2 Jimmythetooth
  • $5 Exacta: 2 with 5,7 ($10)
    Total: $30

Horseshoe Indianapolis: Race 7: Hoosier Heartland H. (1 1/16 miles, 5:36 p.m. ET)

#7 Diamond Solitaire (5-2) misfired in the Peony H. over the Horseshoe Indianapolis turf course last time out, finishing last of 11. But she’s missed the trifecta in all five of her turf starts, so we’ll draw a line through that effort.

Diamond Solitaire has been far more effective on dirt. In fact, her last two starts against fellow Indiana-breds on dirt have resulted in victories. She’s facing Indiana-breds in the Hoosier Heartland H. and has every chance to take home top honors, so we’ll bet Diamond Solitaire to win and play her over #9 Quick and Easy (9-2) in an exacta.


  • #7 Diamond Solitaire (5-2)
  • #9 Quick and Easy (9-2)
  • #8 Hungarian Princess (7-2)


  • $20 to win on #7 Diamond Solitaire
  • $10 Exacta: 7 with 9
    Total: $30

Kentucky Downs: Race 9: Untapable S. (6 1/2 furlongs on turf, 5:54 p.m. ET)

Since 2022, trainer Kelsey Danner has compiled a stellar 3-for-6 (50%) record saddling juveniles at Kentucky Downs. That bodes well for #8 Zo Lee (20-1), a two-year-old filly with a perfect 2-for-2 record at Colonial Downs. After nabbing her debut by 2 1/2 lengths over a next-out winner, Zo Lee stepped up into a $50,000 allowance optional claimer and won comfortably.

Zo Lee fits reasonably well against the Untapable field from a Brisnet Speed rating perspective, making her 20-1 morning line odds too enticing to pass up. We’ll bet her to win and toss in an exacta using #7 Song of Norway (4-1) and #6 Hidden Class (7-2) for second place.


  • #8 Zo Lee (20-1)
  • #7 Song of Norway (4-1)
  • #6 Hidden Class (7-2)


  • $20 to win on #8 Zo Lee
  • $5 Exacta: 8 with 6,7 ($10)
    Total: $30

Carryover Watch

Presque Isle Downs: Race 4: $2,964 Pick 5 carryover (4:21 p.m. ET)

The Wednesday card at Presque Isle Downs brings a $2,964 non-jackpot carryover in the 50-cent Late Pick 5.

A competitive sequence is on tap, and finding a trustworthy single to build tickets around isn’t easy. But a creative possibility exists in Race 7, an allowance taking place over six furlongs on Tapeta.

Eight horses have been entered, and the morning line favorites are #5 Get Even (5-2) and #3 Putin Online (3-1). Get Even has missed victory by less than one length in each of his last three starts over this track and class level, but all three of those efforts came in routes, so cutting back to six furlongs is a question mark.

Meanwhile, Putin Online exits a couple of runner-up finishes against state-restricted allowance competition over the Colonial Downs turf course. Those were decent tries, but Putin Online is facing non-state-restricted competition at Presque Isle Downs, and it’s worth noting he’s 0-for-4 competing over synthetic tracks.

That’s why we’re going to single #8 Shakin It Up Larry (4-1). The five-year-old gelding has wired his last two starts sprinting at Presque Isle Downs, taking a state-restricted $15,000 claimer by three lengths before smashing a non-state-restricted $15,000 claimer by 3 3/4 lengths.

Those victories yielded Brisnet Speed ratings of 90 and 86, higher than the par winning number (84) for Wednesday’s conditions. None of his rivals have recently earned a Brisnet Speed rating higher than 86, so even though Shakin It Up Larry is jumping from claiming competition into allowance company, he’s a great fit for this field and a nice-priced choice to single in the Pick 5.

Kentucky Downs: Race 8: $6,061 Super High 5 carryover (5:21 p.m. ET)

No one hit the 50-cent Super High 5 in Sunday’s final race at Kentucky Downs, which means Wednesday’s card features a $6,061 Super High 5 carryover.

The prize pool is available to chase in Race 8, the above-mentioned Juvenile Sprint S. We’ve already made our case for #2 Jimmythetooth (6-1) as a compelling win choice at a nice price, so why not go a step further and play him in the Super High 5? If we key Jimmythetooth on top and emphasize logical contenders like #5 Good Lord Lorrie (2-1), #7 Hedwig (5-2), and even the appealing longshot #1 Please Advise (15-1) underneath, we should have a solid chance to assemble a winning ticket.

  • 50-cent Super High 5: 2 with 1,5,7 with 1,5,6,7,9 with 1,5,6,7,9 with 1,5,6,7,9,10 ($54)

Good luck!