Tuesday’s Best Bets and Quick Picks: Brandyn can win comeback

March 26th, 2024

Handicapper J. Keeler Johnson shares best bets and quick picks for Tuesday, March 26 at Mahoning Valley, Will Rogers Downs, and Turf Paradise, including a trio of $25 win bets.

Best Bets and Quick Picks

Mahoning Valley: Race 5: $5,000 Claiming (six furlongs, 2:46 p.m. ET)

After competing without much success in $7,500 and $14,000 claimers, mostly on the East Coast, #8 Charger (5-1) appreciated dropping in class for a one-mile $5,000 claimer on March 18 at Mahoning Valley, finishing third by 1 1/2 lengths after pressing the early pace.

Perhaps Charger can move forward and vie for victory while cutting back to six furlongs. It helps that trainer Jay Bernardini has been absolutely on fire at Mahoning in recent weeks, going 15-for-31 (48%) since March 4.

We’ll keep things simple with a win bet on Charger.


  • #8 Charger (5-1)
  • #1 Grand Gizmo (5-2)
  • #5 Frosty Paws (7-2)


  • $25 to win on #8 Charger

Will Rogers Downs: Race 6: $5,000 Claiming (5 1/2 furlongs, 4:30 p.m. ET)

On March 11, #9 Halo Moon (3-1) led all the way to win a $7,500 claimer for non-winners of three races. His victory in that six-furlong Will Rogers Downs sprint yielded a sharp 78 Brisnet Speed rating.

Tackling Tuesday’s unconditioned $5,000 claimer should suit Halo Moon just fine, stamping the four-year-old gelding as a logical win threat for red-hot trainer Bonnie Birzer, who has gone 6-for-13 (46%) at Will Rogers Downs this meet. Let’s place a win bet on Halo Moon, then add a small exacta using price play #3 Knight Disruptor (8-1) for second place.


  • #9 Halo Moon (3-1)
  • #3 Knight Disruptor (8-1)
  • #1 Sam Sez (7-2)


  • $25 to win on #9 Halo Moon
  • $5 Exacta: 9 with 3
    Total: $30

Turf Paradise: Race 6: $20,000-15,000 Claiming (six furlongs, 6:51 p.m. ET)

#4 Brandyn (3-1) hasn’t started since February 2023, when he set the pace on his way to finishing second by half a length in a 5 1/2-furlong $30,000-$20,000 claimer at Turf Paradise. He’s turned in sharp workouts for his return (including a swift half-mile in :46 3/5 at Turf Paradise) and should appreciate dropping into a $20,000-$15,000 claimer.

Adding to the appeal are strong jockey and trainer stats. Trainer Robertino Diodoro has gone 12-for-28 (43%) at Turf Paradise this meet, and jockey Guillermo Rodriguez has won at a 21% rate this meet while going 7-for-16 (44%) teaming up with Diodoro over the last two months.

Let’s bet Brandyn to win and call it a day.


  • #4 Brandyn (3-1)
  • #3 Street Humor (9-2)
  • #8 South Coast Route (6-1)


  • $25 to win on #4 Brandyn

Good luck!