Fun Fun Fun © Photo Healy Racing
Willie Mullins’ first ever runner at Exeter was a winner as the mare Fun Fun Fun held off the late rally of favourite Favour And Fortune in the Trustatrader Fully Vetted Tradespeople Novices’ Hurdle.
The pair had come up against each other once before in the Champion Bumper at the Cheltenham Festival, with Alan King’s Favour And Fortune finishing one place in front of Fun Fun Fun when 14th, giving her 7lb.
This time, 6-4 chance Fun Fun Fun was even better off at the weights, carrying 10lb less, and it was just enough to enable her to claim the valuable Listed black type win.
It looked a great bit of placing by Mullins, despite the near 700-mile round trip, as she only faced two rivals – and Paul Nicholls’ Insurrection was beaten early in the straight.
Tom Cannon made his bid approaching the final flight on the 11-8 favourite but Daryl Jacob had saved just enough on Simon Munir and Isaac Souede’s mare, winning by half a length.
“She’s not the biggest but she’s got a big heart and tries very hard,” Jacob told Racing TV.
“Patrick (Mullins) actually bred her himself and she’s been a great mare since she joined us, she’s got a very willing attitude.
“She rides bigger than she looks but she’s a scopey thing, she can jump well and will probably jump a fence as well. I just like the way she dug deep from the back of the last.
“Patrick said the one thing she loves to do is jump. I actually would have liked to have been a bit lower at the last but she was big at it, but got away from it well.
“Alan King’s horses are in great form at the moment so he was always going to be a tough nut to crack.”