Defender Roger Johnson scored a stunning last-minute equaliser to give Cardiff a deserved draw at Hull.
Steve McPhee opened the scoring after three minutes for Hull from Richard Garcia's cross, only for Steve Thompson to level soon after with a cool finish.
Kasper Schmeichel then saved a Dean Windass penalty, but a later fumble from the keeper allowed Garcia to put Hull ahead again just before the break.
Cardiff pressed hard and Johnson's 20-yard drive was their just reward.
Hull manager Phil Brown:
"We have to learn how to close down the game and they didn't do that. It's inexperience, simple as that.
"We are not going to get there overnight and it's a building-block process - it's going to take a season to know what we are.
"But the bottom line is that I've got a committed bunch of players and a hard-working team who are difficult to play against and can create chances - it's a recipe for success."
Cardiff manager Dave Jones on his team's eventful trip to Hull:
"When all you can hear is 'warning, warning, too low, too low' and you see eight fire-engines chasing you down the runway, you know it's not too good.
"But we got off the plane, jumped on the train and arrived at the hotel at about 8.30pm last night. It was quite nerve-wracking but full credit to the lads - nobody complained.
"I think with the chances we had and the chance we missed it would have been an injustice if we hadn't come away with something."
Hull: Myhill, Ricketts, Turner, Brown, Delaney, McPhee (Livermore 73), Ashbee, Marney, Garcia, Windass (Folan 77), Campbell (Dawson 89).
Subs Not Used: Duke, Okocha.
Booked: Ricketts, Delaney, Folan.
Goals: McPhee 3, Garcia 43.
Cardiff: Schmeichel, Capaldi (Whittingham 61), Johnson, Purse, Gunter, Ledley, McPhail, Rae (Hasselbaink 88), Parry, Thompson, MacLean.
Subs Not Used: Oakes, McNaughton, Ramsey.
Goals: Thompson 6, Johnson 90.
Ref: Mike Dean (Wirral).