Lord Vader and Colin Keane, in Portarlington GAA's colours, with Kieran Leavy and son Oisin Healy© Photo Healy Racing
Cheap purchase Lord Vader (100/30) got off the mark at Cork today, landing the Follow Us On Social Media Maiden carrying the Portarlington GAA colours of owner Kieran Leavy.
Bought for 6,000gns in July 2022, the Ulysees gelding finished third at the Galway festival last month and today, under champion jockey Colin Keane, beat runner-up Highland Rahy by a half-length.
Mullins said “he has been a tricky horse, has plenty of good form this year without getting his head in front and it was nice to find a simple enough five-runner race. Colin was good on him, kept it uncomplicated and the cheekpieces were a help too.
“Buying him, we didn't think we'd be winning a maiden but it was this time of year on fast ground and his experience stood to him. Hopefully he can go on now."
Regarding a potential shift to 'the other side', Mullins added "the initial plan was to go jumping but I hadn't given up on winning a flat race. We'll stay going on the flat for now but he could potentially mix between flat and hurdles.”