Paul Townend produced a remarkable recovery en route to guiding Allegorie De Vassy to victory in the Coolmore N.H. Sires Mogul Irish EBF Mares Novice Chase at Thurles on Sunday.
The Willie Mullins-trained six-year-old was sent into the lead by Townend as the tapes went up and secured a clear advantage before shifting to her right as she approached the first fence, which caused her rider to become unbalanced.
Townend was quick to put both of his arms around her neck on landing but lost his left iron. His silks became undone and his goggles were disturbed.
It seemed inevitable the pair would part company but Townend somehow managed to shift back in the saddle and regain his composure before Allegorie De Vassy jumped the second fence.
The classy mare had been victorious in three previous starts for the Closutton handler, most recently taking the Grade Two Dawn Run Mares Novice Chase at Limerick by 19 lengths.
At the same level at Thurles, she was the 1-8 favourite to oblige again, but her supporters would have breathed a huge sigh of relief after Townend’s magnificent recovery.
That was the only moment of doubt, however, as the bay then strolled home without seeing another rival to prevail by 19 lengths once again.