Life as a fan and owner
Rather than write a "travel guide" of British racing, he presents the book as an autobiography, intertwining his personal life with his racing life, as both a bettor and an owner. The racecourses are presented in an almost chronological order, with a major event in his life serving as the crossroads. The first racecourses he discusses, he is frequently with his father, cheering on his horse Burnt Oak (affectionately called "Bernie") and schmoozing with top trainers and television personalities.
For each visit he describes in detail how the day went, probably in more detail than most readers would care to have. As someone who does not drive, Norbury explains how to get to the course by train, and he always seems to find a pub between the train station and the course where he would down a pint or two before the start of the races, his Racing Post newspaper in hand leading to conversation with fellow punters. He runs down the bets he makes, how he decided to play that horse (oftentimes he was listening to hot tips as opposed to actually handicapping the race himself) and how they fared. As an owner, he has access to the owners and trainers bars so he often describes the scene at these places, commenting on the quality of the hospitality. He highlights the courses that treat the owners best, saying this is important to attract more investors into the game.
A tribute to his late father
Norbury was speaking from the heart when he wrote this book, and in some cases it appears to be an unpolished work, as if written in one draft. He frequently uses bold face for emphasis, as well as liberal use of expletives (censored by asterisks), as if the book was meant to be read aloud. Norbury was speaking from the heart when he wrote this book, and in some cases it appears to be an unpolished work, as if written in one draft. He frequently uses bold face for emphasis, as well as liberal use of expletives (censored by asterisks), as if the book was meant to be read aloud. Readers hoping to learn about the history or architecture of individual racecourses, or details on driving directions need to look elsewhere for this information, which is easily found online today. The book includes two sections of full-color photos, mostly featuring the author and members of his family posing with the various racing celebrities he met during his tour.