Rogue Angel produced a tremendously game front-running performance to claim victory in the BolyeSports Irish Grand National at Fairyhouse.
The Mouse Morris-trained eight-year-old was in front from flag-fall in the hands of conditional jockey Ger Fox and some prodigious leaps on the second circuit kept up the momentum.
Fox made the best of his way home from the home turn, a move that left most of his opponents floundering, but all the while Bless The Wings appeared to be travelling ominously well in the hands of a confident Ruby Walsh.
And the multiple champion jockey looked to have timed his challenge to perfection as Bless The Wings hit the front on landing after jumping the final fence, but 16-1 shot Rogue Angel roared back tenaciously to win an absolute thriller by a short head.
Ballyadam Approach was third, ahead of the winner’s stable companion Folsom Blue in fourth.
Fox said: “I’m still pinching myself - I can’t believe it. This is my local track and I’m just trying to take it all in, it’s brilliant.
“I’ve only ridden him twice and he’s given me a Kerry National and an Irish National. My thanks go to Mouse Morris and Michael and Eddie O’Leary (of Gigginstown House Stud) for giving me the chance on him again.
“I did what I did in the Kerry National, just jumped out in front and let him do his own thing. He jumped from fence to fence and I think he only made two mistakes on the way round.
“What he has is guts and when he got headed, he battled back and got back up again. He never gives up.”