“He won his first start [and then his] second start at Flemington and then third in a Blue Diamond, first colt across the line.
“He didn’t handle the heavy [in the Golden Slipper] and also got galloped on just out of the barriers so he ended up sustaining lacerations to both front legs and ‘Dunny’ just said he looked down and saw blood coming out of one of his tendons so he pulled him up straight away.”
Free Of Debt then ran second in a trial in July, but suffered a slight strain in one of his ligaments, ruling out a spring campaign.
But the colt, who is part-owned by stud farm Aquis, is back up and running with connections hoping to get him into the All-Star Mile.
“The Australian Guineas will probably come up a little bit too quick for him, so I guess that’s the direction we’re going if we happen to get an All-Star Mile berth,” Bieg said.
“That mile race would be perfect for him. The boys are all jumping on board, Aquis obviously own half of him.
“He’s got a pretty big following here in Adelaide and thought it might be worth having a crack at.”
Bieg said Free Of Debt certainly had above-average talent and would enjoy stepping out in trip.
The group 3 Manfred Stakes at Caulfield on February 1 shapes as his return race, before a run in the group 3 CS Hayes Stakes later next month.
“I wouldn’t be concerned about going into the All-Star Mile third up if that’s the way it ended up being,” the Morphettville trainer said.
“He’s quite relaxed for a colt, he’s very, very relaxed and laid back around the stables, he’s not interested in the girls yet. He just gives every indication that when we do get out to that trip with a couple of runs under his belt, he’ll just relax so well.
“We’re very confident we’ve got him back where we want him.”
Adelaide is also represented in the All-Star Mile nominations by last year’s Caulfield Guineas favourite Dalasan, who has five wins and two seconds from eight starts to his name.
Damien Ractliffe is the Chief Racing Reporter for The Age.