He ran superstar colt Pierro to within a head in his first start, but Hidden Warrior was quick to seize the spotlight for himself ahead of Saturday's Cox Plate.
Lining up before the $3 million feature at Moonee Valley, Hidden Warrior had to fight hard to snare victory in the Group Three Telstra PhoneWords Stakes (1200m).
The lightly-raced gelding was steered to an all-the-way win by leading jockey Nash Rawiller, beating Haussmann by a half length with the Craig Williams mount Chosen Moment a further three-quarters-of-a-length back third.
Trainer Paul Perry praised the ride after Rawiller led early then had to hold off his challengers.
"Early in the race he showed a bit of speed then he had them nearly go again on him and to tough it out was a darn good effort," Perry said.
He described Hidden Warrior as a horse which needed to be carefully managed.
"He wasn't a strong horse and we just gave him a couple of good breaks, just to give him a bit of time to mature," Perry said.
Perry said he had not yet decided if Hidden Warrior's next task would be the Group One Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) at Flemington next Saturday.
"I'll see how he pulls up but I'll probably put him in I suppose," he said.
"I think he'll be a usefull horse because I think he's still a bit weak. I think he's the sort of horse that 12 months away will be a lot better."
Rawiller said Hidden Warrior had the makings of "a genuine Group One horse".
"He's just got a long way to go," the jockey said. "He's mentally not there yet."