Tuesday’s Best Bets and Quick Picks: All around the globe

January 23rd, 2024

Handicapper J. Keeler Johnson shares best bets and quick picks for Tuesday, Jan. 23 at Mahoning Valley, Southwell (UK), and Tokyo City (JPN).

Today’s special offers from TwinSpires include:

  • Trifecta Tuesday: Receive a 15% boost on your winning trifecta wagers (up to $25 per day) every Tuesday in January.
  • 10x Points on Harness Racing: Earn 10x reward points on all harness racing wagers (excluding show bets) every Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday during the month of January.

Best Bets and Quick Picks

Mahoning Valley: Race 6: Maiden Special Weight (six furlongs, 3:04 p.m. ET)

#4 Justa Little Moore (7-5) is a logical favorite after cracking the trifecta in four straight races over this track and class level, but his 7-0-3-2 lifetime record hints he’s often content to settle for a minor award rather than challenge for victory.

Let’s try to beat Justa Little Moore with the first-time starter #8 Kennedy’s Camelot (7-2). Hot trainer Robert Gorham has gone 10-for-44 (23%) saddling first-time starters at Mahoning since 2019, and a bullet half-mile workout from the Mahoning starting gate in :48 1/5 on Dec. 20 suggests Kennedy’s Camelot has some ability.

A win bet is in order, along with an exacta using Justa Little Moore for second place.


  • #8 Kennedy’s Camelot (7-2)
  • #4 Justa Little Moore (7-5)
  • #6 Moment in the Dark (9-2)


  • $22 to win on #8 Kennedy’s Camelot
  • $8 Exacta: 8 with 4
    Total: $30

Southwell (UK): Race 9: Handicap (1 3/4 miles, 3:30 p.m. ET)

#2 Smokey Malone (5-1) and #4 King Viktor (3-1) posted similar times when winning separate divisions of a 1 3/4-mile handicap at Southwell on Jan. 11, and both are logical contenders while sticking to the same track and distance on Tuesday.

But what about #7 Molly Mischief (6-1) as a bit of a price play? The four-year-old filly improved sharply when finishing second by half a length against Smokey Malone in the second division of that 1 3/4-mile Southwell handicap, and that race marked Molly Mischief’s first start beyond one mile.

Molly Mischief shouldn’t need a giant step forward to turn the tables, so let’s bet her to win and key her over Smokey Malone and King Viktor in the exacta.


  • #7 Molly Mischief (6-1)
  • #4 King Viktor (3-1)
  • #2 Smokey Malone (5-1)


  • $20 to win on #7 Molly Mischief
  • $3 Exacta: 7 with 2,4 ($6)
    Total: $26

Tokyo City (JPN): Race 3 (1,600 meters, 10:00 p.m. ET)

#2 Nansei Kirakira showed promise as a two-year-old, finishing fifth, fourth, and fourth in three starts. All three of those efforts took place at Tokyo City, and even in defeat Nansei Kirakira’s times were respectable. In a 1,400-meter contest on Oct. 4, Nansei Kirakira ran his final 600 meters (about three furlongs) in :39.3 to reach the finish line in 1:29.9.

If Nansei Kirakira produces a similar performance while stretching out over 1,600 meters for his three-year-old debut, he can cruise to the winner’s circle.


  • #2 Nansei Kirakira
  • #6 Marron Sweets
  • #5 Vento Flavor


  • $20 to win on #2 Nansei Kirakira

Good luck!