An inside barrier draw for Romancer in a 1600m handicap at Flemington has trainer Grahame Begg hopeful the gelding can land the first win of his current campaign.
Romancer heads into Saturday's James Dunbar's Flemington Inn (1600m) off an unplaced finish in the Listed Winter Championship Series Final over the same course and distance last Saturday week.
But Begg believes drawing barrier two in the current field of 12 gives Romancer a better chance to figure on Saturday, with apprentice Teo Nugent to claim 2kg off the gelding's 59kg impost.
"He's going to get two kilos off his back and he's drawn a good gate which is the first time this preparation he's drawn a decent gate over the right distance," Begg said.
"'His past three runs he's drawn wide gates and hasn't had the ideal run, so at least he gets a gate where he (Nugent) can come out very neutral on him and just get a good run."
Romancer was at $18 on Thursday with the field headlined by top weight Sircconi who dominated the Winter Championship Series Final last start, winning by four lengths.
The Nick Ryan-trained Sircconi, who goes up from 56kg to 62kg, is the $4 favourite.
Six-year-old gelding Romancer's most recent victory was at The Valley in August last year.