Thursday’s Best Bets and Quick Picks: Singles for the $3,684 Fair Grounds Pick 6

March 7th, 2024

Handicapper J. Keeler Johnson shares best bets and quick picks for Thursday, March 7 at Fair Grounds and Turfway Park, including horses to single in the $3,684 Pick 6 carryover at Fair Grounds.

Today’s special offers from TwinSpires include:

  • Winter Money Back: Receive refunds on win bets (up to $10) if your horse finishes second or third in select races every Thursday-Sunday.
  • 10x Points at Fraser Downs: Receive 10x reward points on all wagers (excluding show bets) at Fraser Downs on Thursdays and Fridays in March.
  • Woodbine Mohawk 15% Trifecta Boost: Receive a 15% bonus (up to $25 per day) on winning trifecta wagers at Woodbine Mohawk during the month of March.

Best Bets and Quick Picks

Fair Grounds: Race 5: Allowance (six furlongs, 3:45 p.m. ET)

#8 Benji Star (5-2) broke slowly in his debut sprinting six furlongs at Fair Grounds, but gained a ton of ground down the homestretch to finish third by two lengths against a pair of next-out winners. The runner-up, Brittany’s Dream, came right back to win the Louisiana Stallion of the Year Star Guitar S. at Fair Grounds.

Benji Star had better luck in his second start, closing from less than two lengths off the pace to win a six-furlong maiden special weight at Fair Grounds by 5 1/2 lengths. The 85 Brisnet Speed rating he posted towers of Thursday’s field, so we’ll bet Benji Star to win and key him over the stakes-placed #3 Sounds Like Power (9-2) in a small exacta.


  • #8 Benji Star (5-2)
  • #3 Sounds Like Power (9-2)
  • #9 Tdzshininluckystar (9-2)


  • $25 to win on #8 Benji Star
  • $5 Exacta: 8 with 3
    Total: $30

Turfway Park: Race 5: Maiden Special Weight (1 1/16 miles on Tapeta, 7:55 p.m. ET)

Trainer Jonathan Thomas wins at a 39% rate with horses debuting over one mile, and he’s gone 2-for-6 (33%) with such runners at Turfway since 2022. For these reasons, we’ll bet the unraced Thomas trainee #1 Rock Lucky (12-1) in this maiden route for three-year-old fillies.

A stoutly bred daughter of Preakness (G1) winner Lookin At Lucky, Rock Lucky has put together a promising string of half-mile workouts and is slated to be guided by apprentice jockey Sara Hess, who rides with a seven-pound weight allowance. There are enough positives in Rock Lucky’s corner to make her 12-1 morning line odds enticing.

A win bet is in order.


  • #1 Rock Lucky (12-1)
  • #9 Heart Headed Roman (4-1)
  • #10 Sri Lanka (5-2)


  • $20 to win on #1 Rock Lucky

Turfway Park: Race 6: $50,000 Maiden Claiming (six furlongs on Tapeta, 8:25 p.m. ET)

#5 More Hot Sauce (12-1) may be capable of exceeding expectations in this maiden claiming sprint. Trainer George Bush has gone 2-for-6 (33%) at Turfway this meet, and while Bush hasn’t saddled a winning first-time starter in a number of years, two of his three debuting runners since 2022 have finished in the money.

More Hot Sauce breezed a quick half-mile from the Turfway starting gate in :48 last month and is slated to be ridden by the above-mentioned apprentice jockey Sara Hess, so at 12-1 More Hot Sauce is worth betting to win.


  • #5 More Hot Sauce (12-1)
  • #7 Stonks (9-5)
  • #2 Man With the Moves (8-1)


  • $20 to win on #5 More Hot Sauce

Carryover Watch

Fair Grounds: Race 5: $3,684 Pick 6 carryover (3:45 p.m. ET)

After going unsolved during the last two racing days, the $1 Pick 6 at Fair Grounds has tossed up a double carryover worth $3,684 for Thursday’s card.

The six-race sequence gets underway in Race 5, the six-furlong allowance in which we’ve highlighted #8 Benji Star (5-2) as the horse to beat. Given his flashy form lines and field-topping 85 Brisnet Speed rating, Benji Star looms as a viable single to start the Pick 6.

Another possible single can be found in Race 6, a maiden special weight for three-year-olds and older horses sprinting about 5 1/2 furlongs on turf. But it depends on whether the race stays on its intended surface. Fair Grounds was off the turf on Wednesday, and if Thursday’s grass races are switched to dirt as well, main-track-only entrant #11 Global Stage (8-5) is bound to be formidable.

Global Stage started twice during the first few months of 2023, finishing third and second in six-furlong maiden special weights at Oaklawn Park and Keeneland. In the Keeneland contest, he was beaten only by Sweet Cherry Pie, who went on to win the My Frenchman S. and place third in the Franklin-Simpson (G2).

Global Stage’s first two starts yielded strong Speed ratings of 88 and 94. He hasn’t run since, but none of his Thursday rivals have posted a Speed rating higher than 82, so Global Stage might not need his absolute best off the layoff to beat this field in his five-year-old debut.

But Global Stage may well bring his A-game on Thursday. He’s conditioned by high-percentage trainer Brad Cox, a 26% winner with horses returning from layoffs of 90 days or more. And Global Stage is slated to be ridden by hot jockey Florent Geroux, a 26% winner at Fair Grounds this meet and a 29% winner teaming up with Cox over the last two months.

In short, there’s a lot to like about Global Stage, and if Fair Grounds is off the turf on Thursday we’ll make him a second Pick 6 single.

Good luck!