Front Page stormed into contention for the $1.3 million Kosciuszko after a dominant victory in the listed A.R. Creswick Stakes (1200m) at Flemington on Saturday.
The three-year-old, piloted by Lewis German, started well and edged its way to the front before finding another gear to pull away and win by almost three lengths to continue a golden run for Corowa trainer Geoff Duryea.
Front Page, the younger brother of the stable's star galloper News Girl, entered the race in superb form after demolishing lower class fields at Albury and Wangaratta and was unfazed by his first trip to the city.
Incredibly, he's now second in the market for the Kosciuszko, which Duryea will also target with News Girl.
"I thought a fair way out they would have to be going pretty well to get past us," Duryea said.
"Every time I lift the bar, he goes faster. That's a pretty good habit to have.
"He's such a casual bugger. He just goes through the motions.
"If they go slow he goes slow. At home I work him with the slowest horse and he just basically keeps up with them, but if I work him with his big sister (News Girl), who is a fairly quick horse, he keeps up with her."
Duryea admitted he was surprised with the ease in which Front Page put away the field, but only had to look back to two starts earlier when he saluted by almost 10 lengths at Albury.
"When you think about what he did at Albury, he got to the front, put a length and a half on them and then Jordy (Mallyon) gave him a couple around the bum and all of a sudden he went 'whoosh' and won by 10," Duryea said.
"He must have been thinking 'you must want me to go faster' (laughs).
"He's got plenty of gears alright."
With a perfect record so far, Duryea will send Front Page to the paddock for a spell and reconsider his options for the spring.
"I suppose we've got to look at something serious towards the end of spring with him," he said.
"You would think this race will hold him in good stead for something, without flying too high.
"Talking about the Kosciosko, it's certainly on the wish list and so it is with his sister.
"We're in a situation I'd never thought in my wildest dreams we'd be in.
"There's a lot of water to go under the bridge, but if they're both (Front Page and News Girls) eligible we'll go from there."
News Girl is currently in the paddock and thriving according to Duryea, but she may just have lost her mantle as the stable's leading galloper.
"Before all this he was News Girl's little brother, but now she's his big sister," he laughed.
Meanwhile the Donna Scott-trained Lord Von Costa also returned to form at Flemington with a strong fourth place effort in the Adam Lindsay Gordon Handicap (1100m).
Less than a length separated the first four runners.