Paul Hanagan won on his final ride at Kempton on Thursday to lead Richard Hughes by two in the race for the jockeys' championship.
Irishman Hughes bagged a double on board Queen Of Cash and Dingaan but Hanagan hit back courtesy of 3-1 favourite Iron Condor.
Earlier at Lingfield, Hanagan had a success on Jeremy Noseda's Ritual while Hughes had seven races without a win.
With two days to go in the race, Hanagan leads Hughes by 188-186.
Just as Hanagan had made the most of an obvious winning chance on odds-on favourite Ritual, so did Hughes as he gave the Hughie Morrison-trained Queen Of Cash (7-2) a masterful ride in the nursery at Kempton.
Ritual is owned by Highclere Thoroughbred Racing, whose managing director Harry Herbert said: "Hughesie actually wanted the ride, but Paul has ridden this horse the last two times and won on him so it would have been very tough to have jocked him off."
If the ride on Queen Of Cash was good, Hughes surpassed it with his effort on 13-8 favourite Dingaan, winning going away from Hanagan on Vhujon.
But just as the momentum seemed to be firmly with Hughes, Hanagan hit back through the James Eustace-trained Iron Condor.
Northern-based Hanagan was clearly relieved and commented: "I have just been down here living in a suitcase all week from last Saturday and it has been tough.
"I have been hitting the crossbar when I come here and it is great to get one on the board. It is great for racing, and just what we need - it's just not great for me or Richard.
"But I have got to go out and do what I have been doing, keep focused and not worry about what Richard is doing. But that can be quite hard at times."
Hughes had endured a trying time on Wednesday when adverse weather conditions meant his helicopter from Nottingham had to land in Leicester, meaning he missed the evening meeting at Kempton.
And, reflecting on Wednesday's travails after his win on Queen Of Cash, Hughes added: "That has made it worthwhile. The trip here was grand, I had to go back up [in the helicopter] to get my confidence back and I tell you what, I was glad to get down."
The show moves on to Southwell and Wolverhampton on Friday, with Hanagan riding at both, while Hughes will be in action solely at Wolverhampton.
Hanagan holds a definite advantage, with six booked rides at Southwell in the afternoon and a further five at Wolverhampton in the evening, compared to his rival's three rides at Wolverhampton.
RICHARD HUGHES (186)
Towy Boy 1735 Wolverhampton
Pipers Piping 1840 Wolverhampton
Colour Scheme 1940 Wolverhampton
PAUL HANAGAN (188)
Suddenly Susan 1300 Southwell
Lexington Bay 1330 Southwell
Sloop Johnb 1400 Southwell
Diggeratt 1430 Southwell
We'll Deal Again 1500 Southwell
Fitz Flyer 1530 Southwell
Style And Panache 1705 Wolverhampton
Ability N Delivery 1735 Wolverhampton
Home Office 1810 Wolverhampton
Kenton Street 1840 Wolverhampton
Beetuna 1910 Wolverhampton
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