08/31/2006 12:00AM

Assiniboia: Streak on line in Speers


Elite Mercedes goes for his fifth win in a row in Saturday's $40,000 R.J. Speers Stakes here at Assiniboia Downs. The R.J. Speers, a 1 1/16-mile race for 3-year-olds and upward, attracted a field of seven.

Trained by Emile Corbel, Elite Mercedes won the Wheat City Stakes last time out in his first local start. A 9-year-old gelding, Elite Mercedes was claimed for $15,000 three starts ago while racing at Churchill Downs.

Raggidy Rowe and Gus Again have also won stakes races here this season.

Trained by Mel Davis, Raggidy Rowe won the Free Press in June. A 4-year-old gelding, Raggidy Rowe finished third in the allowance prep for the Wheat City next time out and then was sent to Northlands Park where he ran two lackluster races in August.

Gus Again won the restricted Agassiz Stakes for the third time in his most recent start. The Wayne Elias-trained Gus Again had run for as low as a $6,000 claiming price earlier this season.

Albarino, a who won four stakes last year including the R.J. Speers, has failed to win a stakes this season. He finished second in the Free Press and was a dull sixth in the Wheat City, but won his other two starts this year in the allowance preps for those stakes.

Arthurlooksgood defeated second-level allowance company last time, earning a Beyer Speed Figure of 80,the best last-out Beyer in the Speers field. Arthurlooksgood was a close second behind Raggidy Rowe in the Harry Jeffery last year.

The field rounds out with Illalwaysbethere and Pinchme.

* Last Sunday, The Max ($3.50) romped to a 9 1/2-length victory in the Harry Jeffery Stakes. Quick Witted was second and Pass the Bar third. Trained by Bert Blake and ridden by Paul Leacock, The Max was registering his second stakes win from three starts here after finishing second, beaten a head, in the Manitoba Derby.

With the win, The Max improved his lifetime mark to 2-3-0 from 5 starts for earnings of $88,000. He completed the 1 1/8 miles in 1:53.20.