Hurricane Fly defeated his old rival Solwhit, for the fourth time in five meetings, to take the Irish Champion Hurdle at Leopardstown this afternoon.
The winners, Thousand Stars, set the pace and although Solwhit tried hard to make a race of it, he had to settle for second best again, three and a half lengths behind the 4-9 winner.
Thousand Stars was third, with Voler La Vedette fourth and Sublimity last of the five runners.
Mullins said: “I think he’ll go straight to Cheltenham now. I haven’t any other plans for him. I’m delighted to get that over with.
“That was a good performance and we’ll give him a little break now before building him up again for Cheltenham.
“He can jump a bit right when there is nothing on his outside but is very slick when other horses are around him.”
The sponsors cut Hurricane Fly from 5-1 to 9-2 for the Stan James Champion Hurdle after his triumph.