Mirco Demuro was taking the good with the bad after a mixed day that delivered a dirt track double and a careless riding suspension ahead of his full book of rides in the international day features.
The Italian's persistence, fitness and tenacity paid off on Dragon Energy and Axiom, who had a combined local record of zero from 24 before yesterday's breakthrough wins and both looked to be struggling and off the bit during their respective races.
"They took some riding, they just weren't travelling and took a while to find their feet - dirt racing can be like this," said Demuro, who has ridden eight winners and finished second 12 times in 10 meetings since arriving early last month.
It was an incident in another dirt race that saw Demuro suspended for three meetings, after he left insufficient room shifting in on Palepale.
But even then he preferred to look at the positives - which includes the fact the timing of his ban gives him an extended Christmas break.
The lightweight jockey, who can ride at the minimum 113 pounds, is hoping the race programme pans out in a way that he can retain the rides on his winners, who will both go up in grade next start. "Even though their records didn't look very good before today, I think they can win again when they go up in class," he said.
Trainer Tony Millard had only tried Class Five winner Dragon Energy on the dirt once, where the son of Savabeel had recorded his best race result of third, and some background knowledge of the four-year-old's breeding gave the South African handler even more confidence that the horse's best runs would come on the all-weather track.
"He is a half brother to Danewin Tiger, who won a couple of times on the dirt," he said.
"I know he has dropped into the bottom grade, but he is a nice enough horse and I hope he will develop into a nice dirt horse."
Andreas Schutz-trained Axiom arrived on a mark of 82 after a fifth in the 2012 German 2,000 Guineas and took 15 runs to find Class Four.
"He can win in Class Three I think, over the same distance, 1,650m on the dirt," Demuro said.
Demuro has attracted strong support from home and abroad for the internationals, led by last year's Hong Kong Mile winner Glorious Days aiming for back-to-back wins.
He also rides Khaya (Vase), Helene Super Star (Cup) and Japanese mare Little Gerda (Sprint).