Steadied early on that occasion, the Aidan O’Brien-trained colt was out the back for much of the trip but made rapid late progress into third place, despite having to be switched wide in the closing stages.
He didn’t look the quickest of animals on that occasion but starting off over nine furlongs is a big ask for any juvenile, and his strength at the end of the race really caught the eye.
It’s reasonable to deduce he will be ridden a little more positively over this one-furlong-shorter trip, and, that being so, it will take a smart sort to lower his colours.
His stable companions, African, Auckland and Max Liebermann, are all worth noting in the betting, but the one that catches the eye on debut is the Dermot Weld-trained Haripour, which is a Shamardal half-brother to stablemate and Irish and Epsom Derby winner Harzand.
The latter was beaten on his sole start at two, in a back-end maiden, but that didn’t stop him becoming a top-class three-year-old.
It would be no surprise if Haripour also needed more time.
Cul An Ti can defy top weight in the Gowran Park Racing Club Nursery. Emmet Mullins’ filly ran well on debut at Sligo, where the conditions were extremely demanding, and she backed up that effort by finishing a close third behind Trevanna at Down Royal on her next start.
At the time it didn’t look a great run, behind a 40-1 newcomer, but the winner boosted the form when winning last Sunday at the Curragh, while runner-up Hansian Prince was impressive at Limerick on his next start.
It’s a touch concerning Cul An Ti went to Dundalk, presumably for better ground, on her third start, but her fourth place finish there, behind high-class prospect Glastonbury Song, reads well in the context of today’s race. Back on testing ground but enjoying a huge drop in class, she can prove too smart for these rivals.
Bouquet Garni, who has plenty of experience in handicap company and on soft ground, looks sure to run her race, but may find the selection too progressive.