The stories and verses in this collection are not just anecdotes, racing history pieces, or rehashed feature articles from sports journalists; first and foremost they are good literature. The common thread running through the wonderful Australian short stories featured in this volume is the real Aussie character and passion for life that racing seems to bring out in our culture. There are tales of childhood dreams, great achievements, victory in adversity and also tales of tragedy and heartbreak. There are stories of crazy schemes and hilarious events that could only happen on an Australian racetrack. There are colourful, larger-than-life characters immediately recognisable to us all. There is also a fine collection of stirring ballads, hilarious verses and poignant and moving poetry. Racing is the sport of kings and deadbeats. No Australian activity better reflects our national character and its weaknesses and strengths. This volume captures all the colour and passion, tragedy and emotion that thoroughbred racing brings to the lives of the owners, breeders, trainers, jockeys, punters, battlers, and dreamers who live with horses every day, or just love a bet on the Melbourne Cup.