Churchill Downs Picks: Pioneering Spirit full of ingenuity on June 24

This week at Churchill Downs has seen some inordinately high temps ... Check out these hot picks, along with some targeted analysis below!
This week at Churchill Downs has seen some inordinately high temps ... Check out these hot picks, along with some targeted analysis below!

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Churchill Downs Picks - Friday, June 24, 2022

  • Race 1: 4-6-2-1
  • Race 2: 2-6-3-7
  • Race 3: 5-1-3-8
  • Race 4: 4-1-5-2
  • Race 5: 5-6-4-2
  • Race 6: 8-2-7-6
  • Race 7: 5-7-6-4
  • Race 8: 8-1/1A-6-4
  • Race 9: 1-10-11-5
  • **Most Likely: Designer Ready #4 (Race 4)**
  • **Best Value: Earley Rose #5 (Race 3)**

The heat is on! With a major temperature spike in Louisville, Churchill Downs has shifted racing times in order ensure the safety of all involved. With the Kentucky Derby in the past, and they are already shifting gears towards the future. The rest of the Meet continues on ... Prepared to run through the July 4th holiday, there will be a regular set of races Thursday through Sunday.

With an 9-race card coming your way, it will make for some excellent betting opportunities. One of the features this summer is the new Matt Winn Turf Course, which opens with a brand new grass surface. News broke Saturday morning that they would be canceling races in order to allow the sod to take root. Time will assist ...

At we have you covered, including all of the action! It is a good time for some of the best that North American racing has to offer. Stay tuned! If you're looking for picks elsewhere around the country this Friday be sure to check out our free Horse Racing Picks via the gold button below. Don't forget to follow us on Twitter ... Horseracing_USA !!!

Horse Racing Picks

Most Likely Winner: (Race 4: Designer Ready #4, 3/1):

If you are after a solid “most likely” type, then this Tom Drury runner shoud be just the one to wager on. A well-bred filly by Tapit, she is owned by Bruce Lunsford, who normally puts his money in some great stock. Drury learned something last time out, when this one ran at Churchill on an off-track. That ALLW Co. race was supposed to be on the grass, but taking to the MT, she did not perform poorly … 4th Place ending. If she can improve on that outing, then she has a solid chance of winning against this group. I think this is a challenging contest, but not one that she cannot handle. Joe Talamo gets the call once again, and his numbers are more than adequate when he pairs with this conditioner. Sometimes … a trainer realizes that one surface might work better than another …

Wagering Recommendation: $100 Win, #4


Off-the-Pace Play of the Day: (Race 3: Earley Rose #5, 4/1):

With some formidable opponents assembling here, I am thinking that Eddie Kenneally’s filly by Warrior’s Reward might be overlooked. She is a homebred for Limestone Thoroughbreds, and her trainer is particularly sharp when it comes to competing in the claiming ranks. The question is … can Rafael Bejarano get her to break alertly, so she can take up a position just off the frontend. If that happens, she has an excellent shot at upsetting this applecart. My wish is that her odds on the tote drift towards 6/1. Wouldn’t that be pretty sweet?

Wagering Recommendation: $100 Bankroll, Graduated Wager WPS #5 ($10-W, $15-P, $75-S)


Spotlight Race of the Day: (Race 7: Dirt, 1 3/16ths, MSW120k, 3+):

The cash infusion by CDI continues, and this time it is impacting the MSW Co. runners. Remember the days before inflation when these types of races were half what they are now? Amazing … In a race like this one, I want to try and find an entry that can take on Todd Pletcher’s Pioneering Spirit #7 and Brad Cox’s Speed Bias #6. It will not be an easy task, especially since both of these 3-yr-old colts look strong. The former missed by a head last time under the Twin Spires at this level, and I am sure that Tyler Gaffalione will do his best to not let that happen again. As for the latter, Cox watched this son of Uncle Mo break his maiden at Oaklawn for owners, Gary and Mary West. You know he will be looking for more in this spot. My solution against this pair of co-favorites is to back Kenny McPeek’s Wolfe County #5. This 3-yr-old might not have the recent class rating that those chalks do, but the former Brendan Walsh runner has experience on the CD MT … that counts for something. Julien Leparoux, a veteran of many wars on the dirt, has the call, and I like that decision. What is most-inviting is the prospect of going longer, and I am betting that this one fits the bill at M/L odds of 8/1. The fact that McPeek is going with “Blinkers Off,” gives me confidence that his charge is ready to take a step forward. Here is the way I will be betting this race … what fun!

Wagering Recommendation: $2 Exacta Wheel, 5 w 6/7


Enjoy some racing under the Twin Spires! Best of luck on another run at Churchill Downs!

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