Low Sun saw off stablemate Uradel to provide Willie Mullins with a one-two in the Dubai £500,000 Cesarewitch Stakes at Newmarket.
Ireland’s perennial champion National Hunt trainer saddled no less than seven runners in the prestigious staying handicap, with long-time ante-post favourite Stratum and Cheltenham Festival heroine Limini spearheading the formidable team.
As the field approached the final half-mile of the two-mile-two-furlong contest, the Ian Williams-trained Stars Over The Sea and Paul Nicholls’ Cliffs Of Dover led the 33 runners, but faded away as Low Sun (10-1) and Seamie Heffernan hit the front.
Uradel was travelling noticeably well in behind in the hands of Billy Lee and the pair drew clear entering the final furlong.
Uradel did his best to get on terms, but with the rail to help, Low Sun dug deep to win the battle by a neck.
Cleonte was third with Vis A Vis fourth.
The heavily backed 4-1 favourite Southern France never threatened to land a telling blow.
We had him on our selling list after Punchestown and he just kept on winning and improving.
Mullins said: “Low Sun is a real hard grafter. The more we ask the more he gives. To think he was on our selling list. We had him on our selling list after Punchestown and he just kept on winning and improving.
“I wasn’t looking at the two of those in the last furlong, I was looking at what was going to pass the two of them. I was hoping one would hold on. I was just delighted nothing came from out the back.
“We had this race in mind when we saw the prize money. We’ve another seven in the Irish Cesarewitch tomorrow and they could have come over here.
“We brought our best ones here. Apart from it being an iconic race which is a delight to have on the CV, the prize money (£500,000) was good and we aimed what we could.
“That is probably his limit. I can’t see him producing another 10lb. I think we’ve squeezed everything we can out of him today. I don’t think he would get into a Melbourne Cup.
“We will try and keep him for those big handicaps. I don’t think he needs to go back over hurdles, I think we’ll let him rest on his laurels.”