3.40 Leopardstown – SALTONSTALL (nap)
The selection, trained by Michael Halford, is a son of Pivotal who shaped with a deal of promise on his debut outing in a 7f maiden at Naas last month (10/1 chance), travelling fluently in midfield but caught in behind runners with over two furlongs left to run, soon in the clear and staying on well inside the final furlong to come home 2¾ lengths adrift in second behind Territory. He duly went one better in a 7f maiden at Limerick three weeks ago (5/6 market leader), waited with in midfield and travelling well, shaken up and closing quickly from the two furlong marker, edging ahead entering the final furlong and merely driven out to see off Pennsylvania by 1¼ lengths (pair nicely clear). There was much to like about this colt’s performance last time, forced wide into the straight and conceding first run to the eventual runner-up, picking that rival up inside the final furlong under nothing more than hands-and-heels riding. He has proven himself with cut underfoot and shapes as though the additional two furlongs on offer here will suit well, by a speed influence but there being plenty of stamina in the distaff side of his pedigree; absolutely no surprise to see this son of Pivotal take the step up into Listed company in his stride here.