Bobs Farm trainer Geoff Harding expects Roll With Lachlan to take plenty of improvement from a fast-finishing second in heats of the group 1 Gold Chalice at Bathurst on Monday.
Roll With Lachlan, a $61 chance, was having his first start since July last year and overcame an interrupted campaign to secure a spot in Friday's $100,000 decider.
Lets Go To Brazil won the opening heat (2260m) of the three-year-old colts and gelding series and Roll With Lachlan nabbed 2018 Bathurst Gold Crown champion College Chapel on the line for second.
"First-up for his three-year-old campaign, it was pretty good," Harding said.
"He should improve a lot off it and he's pulled up well."
Roll With Lachlan's preparations were delayed by a month because of a foot abscess.
He had two trials and was set to resume at Newcastle before heading to Bathurst but his March 16 race was washed out.
Despite his pacer's strong return, Harding was not expecting to win the final given the presence of Victorian star Lochinvar Art, which won heat four by 40 metres without being pushed for an effort.
"We probably can't win the final but if we get a bit of place money or get close to them, that will be nice," he said.
Cessnock trainer Clayton Harmey's Straddie was second to Lochinvar Art to gain a group 1 start, while Barrett, for Singleton trainer Aaron Goadsby and New Zealand's Mark Jones, was third in heat three behind First String and Bettor Jiggle to book his place.