09/21/2006 11:00PM

Elite Mercedes risks streak in Gold


WINNIPEG, Manitoba - Elite Mercedes and The Max headline Sunday's Gold Breeders' Cup, the closing-day feature here at Assiniboia Downs. The Gold Breeders' Cup, a 1 1/8-mile race for 3-year-olds and upward, carries a guaranteed purse of $40,000 with $25,000 available to Breeders' Cup-eligible entrants Albarino, Quick Witted, and The Max.

Elite Mercedes carries a five-race win streak into the Gold Breeders' Cup, which attracted a field of six. Prior to racing locally, Elite Mercedes won his last three starts against claimers at Churchill Downs. In two starts here, both for trainer Emile Corbel, Elite Mercedes won the one-mile Wheat City and 1 1/16-mile R.J. Speers.

The Max has run three times locally after beginning his career with two runner-up finishes against maiden special weight company at Churchill Downs. One of two 3-year-olds in the Gold Breeders' Cup, The Max won the 1 1/16-mile Derby Trial Stakes in his local debut on July 16 and then was beaten a head by Canterbury Park shipper Lord Kipling in the 1 1/8-mile Manitoba Derby next time out.

Most recently The Max, a Bert Blake trainee, was a runaway winner of the 1 1/8-mile Harry Jeffery Stakes.

Quick Witted, the other 3-year-old in the field, won the six-furlong Golden Boy Stakes here earlier this year but has been defeated by The Max in his last three starts. Trained by Corbel, Quick Witted will add blinkers for the Gold Breeder's Cup.

Trainer Carl Anderson sends out both Albarino and Resurgent, who will race as separate betting interests.

Albarino won four stakes last season, including the Gold Breeder's Cup, but has failed to win a stakes race this year. Resurgent finished second to Elite Mercedes in the Wheat City two starts back and his lone win this season came in an allowance race at the start of the meet.

Winless this year, Trick of the North finished second in two stakes at Northlands Park earlier this year.