Promising up and coming jockey Ashley Frye has been rushed to hospital following a fall during a race at the Ashburton Racecourse this afternoon.
It's understood Frye was taken from the course - unconscious - by ambulance, to Ashburton Hospital, and was then transferred to Christchurch Hospital by the Westpac Rescue Helicopter.
A witness said Frye and her mount, Zuleika, were coming down the back straight in race four when the fall occurred.
The horse did not survive the fall, about 200m into the race, and broke a back leg, but it was unclear whether the break caused the fall or was a result of the crash.
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The racing authorities instigated an autopsy on the horse which would hopefully clarify the cause of death and the accident.
The witness said that it was early days and could not say how the fall occurred. Frye's condition was also unknown.
Frye is a promising up and comer, finishing her debut season last year as leading apprentice in the Mainland.
"She's a very, very well-known up and coming jockey, very much so. She's a lovely young girl," the witness said.
Frye was due to ride in other races this afternoon. Her remaining rides had been picked up by other jockeys.
Race four continued following the crash and was won by Young Jim, ridden by Chris Johnson.