One of New Zealand’s leading female jockeys had a lucky escape from serious injury after the horse she was riding died and collapsed on her during a race last weekend.

Trudy Thornton was riding The Cosmob in the feature race at Ellerslie racecourse in Auckland on Saturday 29 November when the horse suffered a major haemorrhage.

The Cosmob was leading the field when it collapsed just 500m after the start of the race. Ms Thornton was thrown off, before the horse landed on her, trapping her underneath.

Officials at the racecourse and Ms Thornton have praised the quick actions of the track staff for pulling the horse off her rapidly, saying their actions saved her life.

She was reportedly not breathing and turning purple when the horse was pulled off her.

Ms Thornton has broken ribs and a bruised spleen and liver but is hoping to be back in the saddle within the next 3 weeks.