Dick Francis (Dick Richard Stanley Francis) Biography
(1920– ), (Dick Richard Stanley Francis), Sunday Express, Dead Cert, Flying Finish, Enquiry, Rat Race, High Stakes
British crime writer, born in Tenby, Pembrokeshire. He served in the RAF during the Second World War; from 1946 to 1957 he was a National Hunt jockey, becoming champion in 1953–4, and from 1957 to 1973 racing correspondent of the Sunday Express. His long series of novels, beginning with Dead Cert (1962), have enjoyed immense popularity and have been praised by, among others, Philip Larkin. They are fast-moving thrillers, usually with a horse-racing background, though latterly the setting has become more varied. Among the best are Flying Finish (1966), Enquiry (1969), Rat Race (1970), High Stakes (1975), In the Frame (1976), and The Danger (1983). His autobiography, Sport of Queens, appeared in 1957 (revised editions 1968, 1974, 1982). He was awarded the OBE in 1984.