Before knowing of his fate with the Racing Appeals and Disciplinary (RAD) Board on Thursday, trainer Mark Riley witnessed his smart two-year-old Of The Brave produce an impressive trial win at Cranbourne.
While being found guilty over Gold For Kev returning a swab with an elevated TCO2 level at Sandown last year, Riley is still to learn of his fate on the charges.
On a brighter note Of The Brave was never out of second gear under Stephen Baster when winning his 800m trial in 45.44 secs.
The two-year-old, a son of Starspangledbanner, scored impressively at his only outing at Caulfield last October.
A paddock accident soon after looked to put Blue Diamond and Golden Slipper aspirations in doubt, but Of The Brave allayed any fears with a stylish trial win.
“He’s still pretty green but the horse is absolutely flying,” Riley said.
“He’s right on track for the Diamond and we’re in a very good position.
“After the Diamond it’s then off to Sydney for the Golden Slipper.”
Of The Brave is to have his lead-up to the Blue Diamond Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield on February 28 in the Blue Diamond Prelude (1100m) on February 14.
The colt will be joined by stablemate Royalic in the Prelude after that two-year-old scored the fastest 800m trial win of the morning in 44.90 secs, but was pushed right out to do so.
Of The Brave is a $12 chance in betting on the Blue Diamond Stakes with last Monday’s Sandown Blue Diamond Preview (1000m) winner Fontition the favourite at $4.40.