Picts may wait for Aintree

King Of The Picts, third in the Deloitte Novice Hurdle, is likely be preserved for the Crabbie's Grand National meeting at Aintree in April.

Pat Shanahan's five-year-old has done well since joining the County Kilkenny handler from Dessie Hughes' yard last summer and turned in another fair effort at Leopardstown on Sunday.

Shanahan is unlikely to risk King Of The Picts in the Supreme Novices' Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival and will instead chart a route towards Merseyside this spring.

He said: "He's never run a bad race for me and I was very pleased with him on Sunday.

"He's been a good money-spinner for the yard, but he's only a small horse so I don't think he'll be tough enough for Cheltenham.

"We'll go to Liverpool instead. I don't know which race yet, but he goes very well fresh so we'll leave him alone until then."