Globe-trotting star Just Believe is on track to defend his crown after an impressive opening heat win in the Inter Dominion Trotting Championship series at Albion Park on Friday night.
Just Believe announced himself by winning last year's Inter Dominion Final and since then has claimed a Great Southern Star and performed admirably in Europe.
He was a class above from the ace draw on Friday and having now won both starts since returning to Australia he looks set to continue to build into the series.
Driver Greg Sugars, who also co-trains Just Believe with Jess Tubbs, was delighted with the performance.
"We're thrilled to bits at how he's handled everything and how he's come through the trip," Sugars said.
"He seems to be even better than he was last year so that's really exciting."
A former star juvenile, Plymouth Chubb was only third-up off a lengthy spell and impressed with his finishing burst.
The win proved a lucky late call-up for driver Cameron Hart.
"What a super horse. He had a few obstacles there on the home turn and to keep trotting the way he did is pretty incredible," Hart said.
"(Trainer) Peter (Manning) said to me he's probably not fully screwed down. Obviously he knows how to train a horse and hopefully he'll be at his peak and right for the final if he gets there.
Driver and co-trainer Chris Lang was excited to kick off the series with a win.
"It's his first trip away so we weren't sure how he would go," Lang said.
"So to do that first up here tonight is great and I'm hoping he continues along that vein in the series."
The second round of heats will take place at Albion Park on Tuesday night.