With the first Flat meeting just around the corner - the William Hill Lincoln - the Lincoln trial took place at Wolverhampton last Saturday.
Over the years, the race has proved a nice enough guide for the big race itself and last year’s winner Strictly Silver was in the field again trying to defend his crown for trainer Alan Bailey.
But there were a whole host of opponents with chances as the bookmakers went 5/1 the field, with top-weight Alfred Hutchinson the favourite under Robert Tart, the same jockey who rode Strictly Silver 12 months previous.
As for the race itself, they went an even pace with the prolific Southwell winner Tellovoi leading on at an even tempo and forcing a few of the others to meet some trouble in-running in behind.
As the pace quickened inside the final three furlongs, Tellovoi was tackled up-front and narrowly overtaken by outsider Party Royal, with the favourite Alfred Hutchinson poised in behind.
But Whispering Warrior got a lovely split towards the inside for Jim Crowley and hit the front inside the final furlong and fought off a renewed effort from Tellovoi late on, with Party Royal in third and the fast-finishing Fashion Line back in fourth. Alfred Hutchinson was fifth.
The one that was a bit unlucky back in ninth was Tres Coronas, who became hampered at least once and wasn’t given a hard time by Graham Gibbons. He could be one of interest in the Lincoln if the ground is the soft side of good.
There was also the Listed Lady Wulfruna Stakes on the card and Keith Dalgleish’s Chookie Royale turned it into a procession. He tracked the early pace-setter, Scott Dixon’s Dr Red Eye, before hitting the front on the crown of the bend for home before kicking clear, streaking some three-and-a-quarter lengths clear at the line under Tom Eaves.
Chookie Royale is entered in the Lincoln.
The two-day William Hill Lincoln meeting features a Mother’s Day Family Fun Day on the Sunday. For tickets, or more details, visit www.doncaster-racecourse.co.uk.