She Will Reign might have been beaten in a barrier trial for the first time but she has done everything trainer Gary Portelli and jockey Ben Melham wanted her to do.
Melham kept the Golden Slipper winner under a hold in Friday’s 800m-trial at Warwick Farm while her stablemate Single Bullet edged past her.
The two were 10 lengths ahead of Chautauqua who ran home pleasingly from last.
“It was exactly what we wanted,” Portelli said.
“We wanted both horses to level up and it worked out good that Single Bullet was there to make her work.
“She had plenty up her sleeve.
“She will have one more trial and then go to the Moir Stakes and on to The Everest.”
Portelli said Pago Pago Stakes winner Single Bullet would head to the Heritage Stakes.
She Will Reign is the second favourite for the $10 million Everest in October with Chautauqua heading the market.
Co-trainer Michael Hawkes said the three-time TJ Smith Stakes winner would have another barrier trial before a decision on a race start.
“He went really good,” he said.
“For us it was just about him stepping out and hitting the line as he usually does.
“He’ll probably have another trial and the second trial will determine where we start and what we do.
With Tommy Berry in Hong Kong this season and unable to return for The Everest, no rider has been decided for Chatauqua.
On Friday it was Brenton Avdulla who got to sit on the grey.
“He felt great, ” Avdulla said.
“His attitude was good. They went at a breakneck speed up front and it took a while to pull him up.”
Earlier dual Oaks winner Egg Tart ran an eye-catching second in a 1000m-heat, making ground along the inside to finish behind her Chris Waller-trained stablemate Veladero.
Egg Tart has won six of her eight starts including the Schweppes Oaks in Adelaide and the Queensland Oaks.