Ballast was at his feistiest worst and front-running best when he took on an ambulance and then comfortably won the $15,000 Manilla Cup (1600m) at Gunnedah.
The nine-year-old gelding's triumph on Saturday followed his Barraba Cup victory the previous Saturday, his elevated form the result of "a new lease of life" and a confidence spike, according to his Tamworth trainer, Melissa Dennett.
Ballast was transferred to Dennett last year, because her partner, Brody Cummins, is well equipped to handle problem horses.
"He's a bit of an old sh*t of a horse," Dennett has said.
And so he was at Riverside Racecourse on a sublime spring afternoon.
"We had a little bit of a pre-race incident when he took the ambulance on," Dennett said. "But he passed the pre-race vet check.
"[It was] a bit of a heart-in-the-mouth moment for a second."
She added: "When you first put him on the track, he just takes off. And sometimes, unfortunately, at some meetings, the ambulance and stewards vehicles are right there."
Ballast's jockey, two kilogram-claiming apprentice Jackson Searle, "had to hold on and hope for the best", she said.
At the Barraba Cup, Searle had to improvise after the plan to lead was abandoned.
He's just full of confidence and enjoying his racing.Melissa Dennett
But at Gunnedah, there was no such issue - Ballast's all-the-way effort ending with a 1.64-length win over the Gavin Groth-trained Danspur (Billy Cray), who was attempting to win for the fifth time at home.
The Michael Craig-trained Time To Dazzle (Rachael Murray) was three lengths away in third place.
"He's just full of confidence and enjoying his racing," Dennett said of Ballast, who paid $4.90 for the win (NSW TAB) - his 11th in 71 starts, for almost $170,000 in prize money.
Searle rode the Luke Pepper-trained Supertanker to victory in the following race - the last on the six-race TAB program.
Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can continue to access our trusted content: