After a frustrating year trying to get a win with former Godolphin sprinter Malahat, Singleton trainer Aleacia Bennett just wants the five-year-old to back it up at Doomben on Saturday.
Malahat, an $80,000 buy for Bennett's parents last year, broke through for his new trainer with a front-running effort in the Lightning Handicap at Tamworth (1000m) on May 31 at $51.
It was the Exceed And Excel gelding's fifth start for Bennett. He was unplaced three times last year at Rosehill and the Gold Coast and returned at Wellington with a 10th on a heavy track on April 5.
However, he thrived back on top of the ground at Tamworth and Bennett was hoping for a repeat in the benchmark 85 handicap (1050m) on Saturday.
"I sent him up there to get to the drier tracks and there's a few more options there than in Sydney," Bennett said. "It's just a bit easier to place him up there than in Sydney at the moment.
"I really just want to see him do it again. Hopefully he got a bit of confidence out of that win. He'd been a long time out of the winners' stall.
"If he runs anything like he did at Tamworth, he's right in it, just looking through the form. But I'll be pretty happy if he can just show that form again, and then we'll look to step him out a bit further."
The victory at Tamworth was an emotional one for Bennett, who has six horses in work.
"To me it was like winning a city race because I put so much work into that horse, so much time with him just getting him right and it finally came together," said Bennett, who had a win with Cecilia on Friday at Scone in the 1100m maiden handicap.
"I think I finally just worked him out, that was the main thing.
"He's had a few little niggly issues. Nothing major but everything just came together for him. I got him back in a grade that he could be competitive in."
Trainer Paula Barron is looking after Malahat in Queensland, where COVID-19 restrictions do not allow Bennett to make the trip.
"That was the hardest part of the decision to send him," Bennett said. "When you've only got a couple, you know them inside out and back to front, and not going with him was like sending your kid off to camp."
Also at Doomben, top Newcastle trainer Kris Lees will chase black-type with Star Reflection in the listed Spear Chief Handicap and Delectation Girl in the group 3 Sapphire Stakes.
At Rosehill, Lees has Attention Run, Mongolian Wolf, Sixties Groove, Big Duke and Frankely Awesome in the listed McKell Cup.
Lees will also hunt back-to-back city wins with Iconic Star at Caulfield.