Legends – Builders – A.E. Dyment, John Dyment, Nathaniel Dyment
An old racetrack superstition was kept alive in 1921 when Herendesy galloped to an easy victory in the 66th running of the King’s Plate. “When the horse is black, bet Brookdale,” was the cry of bettors. It was the fourth Plate win for the Dyment families of Barrie and the Orkney hills near Lynden. Their three previous Plate winners – Thessalon in 1903, Sapper in 1904 and Heresy in 1912 – had predominantly black-coloured hides.
For more than four decades, horses owned, bred and trained by members of the Dyment families had challenged the dominant stables of that era. In 1883, the year the Plate became an annual event at Woodbine, John Dyment had an entry. For the next four decades a Dyment entry was usually in the Queen’s or King’s Plate field.
The most prominent of the Dyments was John Dyment Jr., along with his grand-uncle Nathaniel, whose green and orange silks appeared in the 1890s, and his sons Albert and Simon. The younger Dyment, who rode for his dad in the 1891 Plate, trained and selected much of the bloodstock that provided Brookdale with its success.
John Jr. trained both Thessalon and Sapper. He also bred and trained Heresy until his sudden death prior to Heresy’s victory in 1912. His death at age 35 was mourned not only by horsemen but by hockey people as well as Dyment had been president of Barrie’s OHA team. Nathaniel, a wealthy lumber merchant, spent huge sums of money establishing a breeding and training centre in Barrie. His son, Albert, was president of the OJC from 1924 to 1942.