Keeler Johnson's picks and plays of Aug. 30

August 30th, 2023

Handicapper J. Keeler Johnson shares picks and plays for Wednesday, Aug. 30 at Horseshoe Indianapolis and Assiniboia Downs, including tickets for the $3,073 Super High 5 carryover at Horseshoe Indianapolis.

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.
  • Saratoga $10 Money Back: Receive refunds on win bets (up to $10) if your horse finishes second or third in select races Wednesday through Sunday at Saratoga.

Picks and Plays

Horseshoe Indianapolis: Race 3: Maiden Special Weight (5 1/2 furlongs, 3:38 p.m. ET)

#7 Corso’s Pick (9-2) has shown speed in the mornings for hot trainer Doug O’Neill, who has gone 2-for-5 (40%) at Horseshoe Indianapolis this meet. Corso’s Pick has twice turned in bullet three-furlong workouts at Keeneland, including a gate move in :34 2/5 on Aug. 26.

At 9-2, Corso’s Pick is worth betting to win. Then we’ll play him over #5 Air Cav (3-1) and #6 Cash Only (8-1) in the exacta.


  • #7 Corso’s Pick (9-2)
  • #5 Air Cav (3-1)
  • #6 Cash Only (8-1)


  • $20 to win on #7 Corso’s Pick
  • $5 Exacta: 7 with 5,6 ($10)
    Total: $30

Horseshoe Indianapolis: Race 7: $30,000 Maiden Claiming (five furlongs on turf, 5:53 p.m. ET)

#1 Runtolive (5-2) enters off three consecutive bullet workouts at The Thoroughbred Center, including a swift three furlongs from the starting gate in :34 3/5 on Aug. 26. Trainer Laura Wohlers has gone 1-for-1 debuting juveniles in turf sprints at Horseshoe Indianapolis this meet, and that lone winner entered off a less flashy work tab than Runtolive.

Throw in the fact Runtolive will be guided by apprentice jockey McKenna Anderson (who rides with a seven-pound weight allowance), and there’s a lot to like about the 5-2 morning line favorite. Let’s bet Runtolive to win and key her over #8 Gigi’s World (10-1) and #5 Anoria (4-1) in the exacta.


  • #1 Runtolive (5-2)
  • #8 Gigi’s World (10-1)
  • #5 Anoria (4-1)


  • $20 to win on #1 Runtolive (5-2)
  • $5 Exacta: 1 with 5,8 ($10)
    Total: $30

Assiniboia Downs: Race 2: Osiris S. (5 1/2 furlongs, 9:00 p.m. ET)

#4 Canyouhearmerunnin (4-5) is unbeaten and unchallenged in two starts at Assiniboia Downs, including a 4 1/4-length romp in the five-furlong Graduation S. With Brisnet Speed ratings of 73 and 66 under his belt, Canyouhearmerunnin is the fastest horse in the Osiris field and the one to beat while facing only three rivals.

Let’s get creative and key Canyouhearmerunnin over the filly #3 Commandoslastdance (4-1) in a cold exacta. Two starts back, Commandoslastdance dominated the five-furlong Debutante S. at Assiniboia by 3 1/4 lengths, and she’s adding blinkers and Lasix for Wednesday’s contest.


  • #4 Canyouhearmerunnin (4-5)
  • #3 Commandoslastdance (4-1)
  • #2 Justlemmeatem (9-5)


  • $20 Exacta: 4 with 3

Carryover Watch

Horseshoe Indianapolis: Race 6: $3,073 Super High 5 carryover (5:20 p.m. ET)

There are several reasons to play the “Grand High 5” in Wednesday’s sixth race at Horseshoe Indianapolis. For starters, the minimum bet is only 10 cents, one-tenth of the $1 minimum that is standard for many other non-jackpot Super High 5 wagers.

For another, there’s a carryover worth $3,073 on the table, so bettors who correctly select the top five finishers will win more than they bargained for. And with eight horses in the entries, there are only 6,720 possible outcomes to analyze, a manageable number.

Race 6 is a maiden special weight for Indiana-breds racing one mile and 70 yards on dirt. The morning line favorite is #1 Secret Rendezvous (8-5), who has finished second in each of his three starts over this class level. He’s also run seventh in a couple of stakes (including the Governor’s H. over this track and distance earlier this month), so dropping back down in class figures to produce a competitive showing.

Here’s the problem: Secret Rendezvous is a pure deep closer at the mercy of the pace, and deep closers are often vulnerable against rivals with superior tactical speed. Like #6 Buckle Up (8-1), a longshot with the credentials to steal top honors at a nice price.

Buckle Up failed to crack the trifecta in his first six starts, but five of those were dirt sprints, and the other was a turf route. When he finally tackled a dirt route in a one-mile maiden special weight for Indiana-breds on Aug. 5 at Horseshoe Indianapolis, Buckle Up raced within 2 1/4 lengths of a decent pace, rallied to lead with a quarter-mile remaining, and then faltered late to finish second by a neck.

That was a big effort, and Buckle Up’s reward was a 67 Brisnet Speed rating, not far off the career-best number (69) posted by Secret Rendezvous. Buckle Up has upside for improvement in his second try running long on dirt, so we suggest thinking outside the box and keying him on top in the Grand High 5.

  • 10-cent Super High 5: 6 with 1 with ALL with ALL with ALL ($12)
  • 10-cent Super High 5: 6 with ALL with 1 with ALL with ALL ($12)
  • 10-cent Super High 5: 6 with ALL with ALL with 1 with ALL ($12)
    Total: $36

Good luck!