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Las Vegas, NV - Aqueduct Racetrack in Queens, New York will be the scene of the Grade 2 Top Flight Handicap on Saturday, March 1. Fillies and mares three years old and upward will take to Aqueduct's main track and go 1 1/16 miles looking for the winner's share of the $200,000 purse.
A small but solid field of six older females have been confirmed for the Top Flight -race 8 on Aqueduct's Saturday card. Post time is 3:48 PM. Let's take a brief look into the past performances of all six combatants for this Grade 2 stakes.
Summer Applause - defending champion in this race is coming off an OK fourth in the Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Sprint after a second in the Grade 1 Juddmonte Spinster in October and a win in the restricted Lady's Secret Stakes in August at Monmouth Park. She also won the Grade 3 Distaff Stakes May 18 at Pimlico but followed that with a fifth in the Grade 1 Delaware Handicap in July. She has six wins and three seconds in 15 career starts and has won three of his last her last seven starts overall and will be looking to rebound after a fourth last time out in the Breeders' Cup. Summer Applause is the 8-5 morning line favorite for trainer Chad Brown and departs from gate 4 with Jose Ortiz aboard.
Teen Pauline - Todd Pletcher trained filly had a MSW score in her debut and she finished third as 3-5 favorite in the Grade 3 Spinaway Stakes last September. In 2013 she has a win, a second and two third place finishes in six starts culminating in a good third in the Grade 3 Comely Stakes on this track November 30 to go along with a third in the minor Pebbles Stakes October 14, a second in the minor Riskaverse Stakes in August and an Allowance score three weeks earlier. Teen Pauline has two wins in 2014 - a Ladies Handicap by an incredible 10 3/4 lengths last time out here January 25 and the Affectionately Stakes by 4 ¾ lengths, with a 95 Beyer Speed Figure also on this track January 1. She is certainly trending upward and will leave from post 2 with Irad Ortiz in the saddle at 9-5 odds - looking for her first graded stakes win.
Centring - has 17 career starts for trainer Thomas Albertini with just two wins, seven seconds and four third place finishes but has placed in her last six starts overall - three seconds and three thirds. Last time out was a third in a Ladies Handicap behind Teen Pauline here January 25 after a second behind Teen Pauline in the restricted Affectionately Stakes also on this track January 1. She ended 2013 with some good results as well - a second in the Grade 2 Go for Wand Handicap here November 29, a second in the Grade 3 Turnback the Alarm Stakes October 26, a good third behind the impressive Princess of Sylmar and Royal Delta in the Grade 1 Beldame September 28 and another good third in the Grade 1 Personal Ensign behind Royal Delta. Centring will be looking for her first win in graded stakes company Saturday and will be ridden by Rajiv Maragh from the 3 post at 5-1 odds.
Top Flight Handicap betting at Aqueduct Racetrack with OffTrackBetting.com
Royal Lahaina - Todd Pletcher pupil raced in stakes company for the first time April 20 in the Grade 3 Sixty Sails Handicap and finished fifth. Before that effort was three straight Allowance Optional Claiming scores at Aqueduct. She had an Ok fourth in the Grade 3 Turnback the Alarm Handicap October 26 after a second to Summer Applause in the minor Lady's Secret Stakes but went on to a very nice win over Centring in the Grade 2 Go for Wand Handicap here November 29. She has fallen back to earth a bit in her only two starts of 2014 however finishing third in the Affectionately Stakes behind Teen Pauline and Centring here January 1 and fifth last time out in a Ladies Handicap January 25. Royal Lahaina is 6-1 on the morning line and will leave from the outside post with Corey Nakatani in the saddle.
Flash Forward - placed in five straight minor stakes starts in 2013 and debuted in graded stakes company November 30 finishing sixth in the Grade 3 Comely Stakes here. The wins include a third in the Belle Cherie Stakes October 25 after a second in the Zafig Stakes and a win in the My Flag Stakes at Saratoga in August. Last time out was a second in a Ladies Handicap here January 25. Flash Forward has three wins, four seconds and a third place finish in 14 career starts and is 10-1 on the morning line. Cornelio Velasquez will be in the saddle from the rail Saturday.
Flores Island - Bill Mott trained filly makes her graded stakes debut Saturday but has placed in nine of 10 career starts - three wins, four seconds and two third place finishes. She enters on a three race win streak - an Allowance Optional Claiming last time out on this track January 10, another Allowance Optional Claiming here December 7 and a MSW at Belmont Park in October. She has looked very good of late but is the longest shot in the field at 10-1 odds. Manuel Franco gets the call from post 5.
Race 8 on Aqueduct Racetrack's Saturday card with a Post Time of 3:48 PM.
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