Which trainer saddled the most winners in one day?
Dubbed ‘The Genius’ after saddling the first five home in the Cheltenham Gold Cup in 1983, former Champion National Hunt Trainer Michael W. Dickinson has many claims to fame. Following his retirement from the training ranks, for the first time, Dickinson invented and developed the Tapeta racing surface, which is now in use at Newcastle and Wolverhampton in Britain and various venues worldwide. However, even before the ‘Famous Five’ at Cheltenham, Dickinson had already written his name, possibly indelibly, into the Guiness Book of World Records.
On Boxing Day, 1982, Dickinson made a deliberate attempt – as discussed with his parents, Tony and Monica, months earlier – to break the world record for the number of winners trained in a single day. In fact, during a busy Bank Holiday programme, he sent out twenty runners, or over a third of his string, from his yard in Harewood, West Yorkshire, to six different meetings across the country. The highlight of the day was a win for Wayward Lad, ridden by John Francome, in the King George VI Chase at Kempton but, all told, twelve of the Dickinson-trained horses won and just one of the twenty finished unplaced.