Sweet Lightning earns Lincoln Handicap win at Doncaster

Johnny Murtagh rides Sweet Lightning (right) to victory at Doncaster
Johnny Murtagh rides Sweet Lightning (right) to victory at Doncaster

Sweet Lightning finished strongly to win the Lincoln Handicap at Doncaster.

Jockey Johnny Murtagh brought the 16-1 outsider home ahead of second-placed Brae Hill.

Trainer John Gosden withdrew the favourite, Taqleed, shortly before the race, clearing the way for Andrew Tinkler's horse to win the first major handicap of the British Flat season.

Dubai Hills was third with Axiom fourth in the 21-strong field.

Murtagh said: "This is great. He's been in Dubai and fair dues to him - Andrew said the Lincoln was made for him. He settled well and travelled great.

"In Dubai this year his races were very slow and he just wasn't finishing. The strong pace today really helped, a couple of months in the sun did him good and I've enjoyed it too!

"We were a bit behind at halfway, but I got a nice tow into the race - I know I won on the other side last year but I do like being stands side at Doncaster."

Sweet Lightning only recently returned from Dubai, where he ran four times at Meydan, and looked strong throughout the mile-long flat race.

Irish Heartbeat and Gunner Lindley, ridden by Paul Hanagan and Michael Hills respectively, were both tipped to shine but never threatened the front-runners.

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