A positive ride by Nathan Berry has given him his first Group win on Va Pensiero in the Run To The Rose and erased trainer Jason Coyle's pre-race doubts the colt could win.
Coyle was confident before Saturday's Group Three race Va Pensiero was in great shape, but was concerned when his price drifted from $21 to $31.
"I couldn't understand the price but money starts to talk and I thought we were gone," Coyle said.
Va Pensiero went into the race as the last-start winner of the San Domenico Stakes against a stronger field and over 1200 metres, a distance that has been beyond him in the past.
Berry urged him forward from barrier 10 of 14 and the colt assumed the lead early.
He turned for home well in front and although tiring in the final 100m, held on to beat Dissident ($9.50) by a long head.
Marseille Roulette ($41) was another three-quarters of a length third with favourite Eurozone ($4.60) eighth and Sidestep ($4.80) last of the 14 runners after copping early interference.
The race is the traditional lead-up to the $1 million Golden Rose but Coyle said Va Pensiero was unlikely to step up to 1400m.
"It's 95 per cent he will miss the Golden Rose," he said.
""He is a tough horse and a really nice colt but I think he is better suited to shorter distances and the Coolmore Stud Stakes down the straight at Flemington on Derby day is a race we are looking at."
For Berry, the win was a boost for the 22-year-old who has lived in the shadow of his multiple Group One-winning twin brother Tommy for the past season.
"It's my first Group winner so I'm very happy and I hope it's just the start," Berry said.
"I knew it would come. It's just been a matter of time.
"I knew I had to be positive from the barrier and he had to do a bit of hard work early.
"He showed a how tough he was to hang on."
Hugh Bowman, who rode Eurozone, said he ended up in a position he didn't want to be in while Zoustar's rider Jim Cassidy said he was thrilled with the colt's run after he had trouble at the start.