07/14/2006 12:00AM

Trial filled with new shooters


WINNIPEG, Manitoba - New faces figure to be prominent in Sunday's $40,000 Derby Trial Stakes, with four of the eight 3-year-olds in the field making their first start here at Assiniboia Downs. The Max, Vanilla Scoop, Boulder Hat, and Brooklands will each make his first local appearance in the 1 1/16-mile Derby Trial.

The Max makes his first start for owner Robert Mitchell and trainer Bert Blake, who won the Manitoba Derby last year with Prime Time T.V. Purchased privately since his last start, The Max will make his third start, having finishing second twice against maiden special weight company on turf at Churchill Downs.

Stakes-placed Vanilla Scoop has won 2 of 11 starts. In April, Vanilla Scoop finished second in the seven-furlong Sophomore Stakes at Tampa Bay Downs behind Electrify, who later won the Unbridled Stakes at Calder. Two starts ago, Vanilla Scoop finished third in the Prairie Mile at Prairie Meadows.

Boulder Hat scored his only victory three races ago in a maiden special weight event at Prairie Meadows.

Most recently, Boulder Hat finished second against first-level allowance company at Prairie Meadows in his first try at a route of ground.

Brooklands has failed to hit the board in six lifetime starts. In his most recent start Brooklands finished fourth, a length behind The Max.

Quick Witted represents the best local hope. Trained by Emile Corbel, Quick Witted defeated maiden special weight company in his first local start on May 7. Quick Witted then won the Golden Boy Stakes before a third-place finish against older horses in a second-level allowance in his latest start on June 27.

Ruark's only win came in the restricted Manitoba Stakes in his last start.

Pass the Bar finished second behind Quick Witted in the Golden Boy two starts ago. In two other starts this year, Pass the Bar finished second and third against first-level allowance company.

The field rounds out with I Tell U What, who defeated first-level allowance company in his last start.