Version: Unabridged
Author: Dick Francis
Narrator: Ralph Cosham
Genres: Detective Stories
Publisher: Blackstone Audiobooks
Published In: January 2000
# of Units: 5 CDs
Length: 5 hours, 46 minutes
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Jockey Kelly Hughes and trainer Dexter Cranfield had been barred from racing -- a devastating event for them both. The charge at the secret enquiry? Throwing a race for personal profit. It was a vicious frame-up and, worse, they had nowhere to turn to clear their names. Still Hughes refused to take the phony verdict lying down -- even though his personal enquiry might have him lying down permanently....

Reviews (5)


Written by Jean from Santa Cruz, CA on April 4th, 2011

  • Book Rating: 5/5

Dick Francis books are always a delight. The story moved right along with some suspense and some humor. The horse race is always exciting as written by Francis. You never want the story to end. Makes you feel like family.


Written by Larry Moshan on March 20th, 2007

  • Book Rating: 4/5

I have loved Dick Francis' novels and when I listened to an audio version I was apprehensive that the person reading the book would not measure up to how I perceived the Francis main character. I was most pleasantly surprised. The reader was terrific and provided me with the richness of the Dick Francis novel I was seeking. I recommend this book very much.

Worth the read

Written by Anonymous from Plano, TX on February 8th, 2007

  • Book Rating: 4/5

Not my favorite Dick Francis book, but still a good tale and well worth listening to.


Written by Rosalyn Hines from Atlanta, GA on November 13th, 2005

  • Book Rating: 5/5

I liked the Dick Francis novels when I read them as books. This was no exception. The use of British horse racing as the milieu in which the Francis novels are set is quite interesting, especially since he does not repeat characters. The story ably kept my attention; the narrator has a wonderful voice, which is not always true of book narrators! A great "read."

another good one

Written by Erin Burchette from Tuscaloosa, AL on October 20th, 2005

  • Book Rating: 4/5

I've never read a Dick Francis that I didn't enjoy; this one is no exception.

Author Details

Author Details

Francis, Dick

" Dick Francis was born in Lawrenny, South Wales in 1920. He served in the Royal Air Force for six years during World War II, piloting fighter and bomber aircraft including the Spitfire and Lancaster between 1943 and 1946.

Following the war, Francis, the son of a jockey, became a celebrity in the world of British National Hunt racing. He won more than 350 races, was Champion Jockey in 1953/54, and was retained as jockey to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother for four seasons, 1953 through 1957. Francis rode eight times in the world famous Grand National Steeplechase, and nearly won in 1956 when his horse, the Queen Mother's Devon Loch, a few strides away from victory with a clear field, suddenly collapsed. This incident, which Francis calls ""both the high point and low point of my career as a jockey,"" was the impetus for him to begin a second career as a writer. Shortly after the incident, a literary agent approached Francis about writing an autobiography.

In 1957, Francis suffered another serious fall and was advised to retire from race riding. He completed his autobiography, The Sport of Queens, which was published later that year, and accepted an invitation to write six features for the London Sunday Express. He stayed on as the newspaper's racing correspondent for 16 years.

Sports writing soon led to fiction writing, which in turn led to a string of bestselling novels. His first, Dead Cert, was published in 1962. His 36th novel, 10 Lb. Penalty, was published in the U.S. by G.P. Putnam's Sons in September 1997. In addition to his novels and autobiography, Francis has also published a biography of Lester Piggott, A Jockey's Life, and eight short stories. He has edited (with John Welcome) four collections of racing stories, and has contributed to anthologies and periodicals.

Francis's books have been bestsellers in a number of countries, and have been translated into more than 30 languages, including all European languages, Japanese, Korean, Taiwanese, Bantu, and several dialects of Chinese. Each of his novels has also been recorded on audio in both Britain and the United States.

Francis was made an Officer of the most noble Order of the British Empire in 1984, and was awarded the British Crime Writers Association silver dagger in 1965, gold dagger in 1980 and Cartier diamond dagger for his life's work in 1990. The recipient of three Edgar Allen Poe Awards for Best Novel from the Mystery Writers of America, most recently for 1995's Come to Grief, Francis is the only person to have been awarded the prestigious award more than once. The Mystery Writers of America named Francis Grand Master for his life's work in 1996, and he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from Tufts University in 1991.

Francis' adored wife Mary, who helped with much of the research for his books, died in 2000, shortly after they celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary. With the death of his Mary, his spiritual and literary helpmate, he decided to call it a day. His 39th book, Shattered, was published in 2001. "