KUKRI Trophy glory beckons for David Oughton's star three-year-old Hussar after a classy barrier trial display in the second of eight heats run down the Sha Tin 1,000-metre chute yesterday. With the rail wisely moved out to protect the inside of the course, the imposing son of Danehill cruised up the stands' rail to finish a short head adrift of John Moore's dual winner and straight 1,000-metre specialist, Hainan Dragon. They came home in a very slick 22.7 seconds, by far the fastest final quarter of the session, as well as recording the fastest overall time of 58.4. With stable jockey, Mick Kinane, unable to ride Hussar in the Kukri as he leaves for Ireland after tomorrow night's meeting, John Marshall has been snapped up for the ride. Marshall was on board yesterday morning and the partnership will be hard to defeat a week on Saturday in an exciting programme which also features the Centurion Trophy. The Kukri is for three-year-old griffins from the last two seasons and is run over 1,200 metres. At the ratings, Hussar comes out a long way in front of his opponents who are headed by the likes of Deauville, Diamond Fortune, District Relative, Dolphin and Lifo. Oughton also has one of the more fancied runners in the Centurion in the shape of English import Danish Heights who stayed on well enough into third in the fifth heat won by David Hill's leading sprinter Debonair. The run to note from this trial came from the Ivan Allan-trained Regal Ridge who has improved with each outing and went to the line hard held by Basil Marcus yesterday. Allan took the first trial with Prominence who was driven out by Stanley K. M. Chin to do so from a modest bunch. Hill's Splendid Feeling took the third, but faced little opposition in the process. Power Protection has been on many shortlists for a future punt since joining Patrick Biancone from Lam Hung-fie, given the massive improvement the master French handler has extracted from other horses he has taken over this season, not least Bumper Star. Power Protection was yet again badly outpaced behind Splendid Feeling, but he did pick up over the final 200 metres. There was an improved effort from Intermac Joker in winning the fourth in which Biancone's Double Expresso went pleasingly.