Top Flight Invitational Handicap 2016 at Aqueduct Racetrack

Dave Bond | OTB Writer - The Grade 3 Top Flight Invitational Handicap is on tap for this Sunday, April 3 from Aqueduct Racetrack in Queens, New York. Fillies and mares four years old and upward will take to Aqueduct's dirt track and race 1 1/8 miles searching for the winner's share of the $200,000 purse.

A field of seven have been confirmed for the Top Flight Invitational- race 8 on Aqueduct's Sunday schedule. Post time is 5:11 PM. Let's take a look into the past performances of all seven combatants for this Grad 3 stakes.

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2016 Top Flight Invitational Handicap Race Preview

Carrumba - Shug McGaughey trained filly hasn't been worse than second in six career starts with three wins so far. Last time out was a respectable second behind Forever Unbridled in her stakes debut - the Grade 3 Comely Stakes at Aqueduct November 28. It followed consecutive Allowance scores in the fall at Belmont Park and a MSW score in August. Carrumba has been competitive every time out and is expected to be again Saturday. Jose Ortiz will be in the saddle from post 3 trying for Carrumba's first stakes score.

Mei Ling - Todd Pletcher trained mare has four wins, six seconds and four third place finishes in 18 career starts. She has been good lately - a win last time out in the minor Heavenly Prize Invitational Stakes at Aqueduct March 5 followed a third in the minor Maryland Racing Media Stakes February 13, a second in a Ladies Handicap at Aqueduct in January and a good runner-up finish in the Grade 3 Go for Wand Handicap in November. She has now placed in eight of her last nine starts overall and will be chasing her first graded stakes score from gate 2. John Velazquez gets the call.

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America - the only graded stakes winner in the field - Bill Mott trained mare has five wins and three seconds in 20 career starts. Last time out was a fifth in the Grade 3 Go for Wand Handicap here in November which followed a win in the Grade 3 Turnback the Alarm Stakes at Belmont Park October 30, an eighth in the Grade 1 Flower Bowl Stakes October 3 and a fifth in the Grade 1 Personal Ensign Stakes at Saratoga in August. She has placed in just two of her last seven starts overall and looks for her second graded stakes score in her last three starts. Irad Ortiz has the mount from the outside post 7.

Joint Return - multiple stakes winning John Servis trained mare will be after her first stakes win having recorded five wins, four seconds and two third place finishes. She was fourth in this race last year and has placed in just three of nine starts since. Last time out was a second in the minor Maryland Racing Media Stakes and off-the-board finishes in six straight races including the minor Wayward Lass Stakes at Tampa Bay January 23, a fifth in the Grade 3 Turnback the Alarm Stakes in October and a sixth in the Grade 1 Delaware Handicap in July. Joint Return hasn't been great lately but hopes to make a statement Saturday from gate 4.

Noble and a Beauty - 2015 winner of the minor Cicada Stakes at Aqueduct - Richard Violette trained filly has three wins and a second place finishes in eight career starts. Last time out was an Allowance Optional Claiming score at Aqueduct February 18 after she failed to place in her four previous starts. She hadn't been impressive before last time out and will be out to build on her best effort in a year. Aaron Gryder has been tabbed to ride from the rail.

Madam Aamoura - Rudy Rodriguez trained filly makes her graded stakes debut Sunday having recorded just two wins, three seconds and five third place finishes in 16 career starts. She enters off her best effort in a while - an Allowance score here February 21 which followed a fourth and a ninth respectively in a pair of Allowance Optional Claiming races to end 2015. She has placed in four of her last six starts overall however albeit against lesser competition when she departs from post 5 with Manuel Franco in the reins.

Regia Marina - Thomas Albertrani trained filly has just one win in 10 career starts but has five seconds and two third place finishes as well. She makes her stakes debut Sunday off a sixth in an Allowance here February 21 and on-the-board finishes in eight straight MSW races on New York tracks. She had been trending upward before last time out and steps up in so-so form. Christopher DeCarlo will be in the irons Saturday from gate 6.

2016 Top Flight Invitational Handicap Entries & Odds

Race 8 on Aqueduct's Sunday card with a Post Time of 5:11 PM.

Entry Horse ML Odds Jockey Trainer
1 Noble and a Beauty 12-1 Aaron Gryder Richard Violette, Jr.
2 Mei Ling 2-1 John Velazquez Todd Pletcher
3 Carrumba 9-5 Jose Ortiz Claude McGaughey III
4 Joint Return 8-1 Kendrick Carmouche John Servis
5 Madam Aamoura 15-1 Manuel Franco Rudy Rodriguez
6 Regia Marina 30-1 Christopher DeCarlo Thomas Albertrani
7 America 3-1 Irad Ortiz, Jr. William Mott

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