Keeler Johnson's picks and plays of Aug. 10

August 10th, 2023

Handicapper J. Keeler Johnson shares picks and plays for Thursday, Aug. 10 at Colonial Downs and Horseshoe Indianapolis, including a trio of exactas.

Today’s special offers from TwinSpires include:

  • Hoosier Park $1,000 Pick 4 Hit It & Split It: Hit the late Pick 4 on Thursdays at Hoosier Park to win your share of a $1,000 weekly jackpot.
  • Colonial Downs Thursday Leaderboard: Place $10+ win bets on Thursdays at Colonial Downs to compete for your share of a $2,500 weekly jackpot.
  • Saratoga $10 Money Back: Receive refunds on win bets (up to $10) if your horse finishes second or third in select races Wednesday, Aug. 2 through Sunday, Aug. 6 at Saratoga.
  • Del Mar Daily Double Down: Receive a 25% bonus (up to $25 per day) on winning daily double wagers on Thursdays and Fridays at Del Mar. Your base wager amount must be minimum $2.

Picks and Plays

Colonial Downs: Race 1: $40,000 Maiden Claiming (six furlongs, 1:30 p.m. ET)

#1 Sweet Soddy J (8-1) has posted a couple of bullet workouts at The Thoroughbred Center, highlighted by half a mile from the starting gate in :48 2/5. He’s a son of Metropolitan H. (G1) winner Bee Jersey (who is siring 21% winners from first-time starters), so there’s a lot to like about Sweet Soddy J’s chances.

At 8-1, Sweet Soddy J is worth betting to win and keying over the class-dropping #4 Imperialty (9-5) in the exacta.


  • #1 Sweet Soddy J (8-1)
  • #4 Imperialty (9-5)
  • #9 Jack Cloud (8-1)


  • $20 to win on #1 Sweet Soddy J
  • $10 Exacta: 1 with 4
    Total: $30

Horseshoe Indianapolis: Race 1: Maiden Special Weight (one mile, 2:10 p.m. ET)

Among the experienced runners in this field of Indiana-bred juveniles, #5 Bachman (9-2) is the only one who has shown early speed. The son of Free Drop Billy pressed the pace in his debut sprinting five furlongs over this track and class level before weakening in the final furlong to finish fifth by six lengths.

Bachman has every chance to shake loose on an uncontested lead while stretching out in distance for his second start, making his 9-2 morning line odds appealing. The fact trainer Caio Caramori wins at a 22% rate with horses running long for the first time cements Bachman as a viable win contender.

#3 Shagbark (3-1) and #7 Dattts Life (5-2) can battle for a place in the exacta.


  • #5 Bachman (9-2)
  • #3 Shagbark (3-1)
  • #7 Dattts Life (5-2)


  • $20 to win on #5 Bachman
  • $5 Exacta: 5 with 3,7 ($10)
    Total: $30

Horseshoe Indianapolis: Race 8: Maiden Special Weight (7 1/2 furlongs on turf, 5:50 p.m. ET)

Since 2018, trainer Brad Cox has compiled an excellent 11-for-39 (28%) record debuting juveniles on turf at Horseshoe Indianapolis. This bodes well for Cox’s unraced two-year-old #2 Taamuq (9-5), a daughter of four-time leading North American sire Into Mischief. The bay filly has posted quick workouts at Keeneland and Horseshoe Indianapolis and should have every chance to factor under jockey Emmanuel Esquivel, a 44% winner teaming up with Cox over the last two months.

Fellow first-time starter #4 Mo Sense (6-1) can complete the exacta for red-hot trainer Eddie Kenneally, who has gone 5-for-7 (71%) at Horseshoe Indianapolis this meet.


  • #2 Taamuq (9-5)
  • #4 Mo Sense (6-1)
  • #5 Queen Carina (3-1)


  • $20 to win on #2 Taamuq
  • $10 Exacta: 2 with 4
    Total: $30

Good luck!