Vale , Bob Norris

Greg Tobin - Tuesday March 5

Sad news out of Victoria this week with the death of Bob Norris following a long illness.

Unless you’re from Vic – or more specifically the north east of the state – the name might not ring a bell, but to breeding and racing folk in that region, Bob’s legacy stands out like a sale topping colt.

Vale, Bob Norris - pictured at the Wood Nook Dispersal.

Bob worked largely behind the scenes and was, for many years, the farm manager for Bob Scarborough’s hugely prolific Wood Nook Farm at Nagambie.

During his time at Wood Nook, some of the nation’s finest gallopers – Marble Halls, Stella Cadente, Final Card, Gallica, Gold Ace, Hit the Roof, Leica Guv, Light Fantastic and Sleek Chassis among them - were either raised and/or grazed at the property under Bob’s ever watchful gaze.

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Following the sale of Wood Nook and the dispersal of its stock, Bob was instrumental in the establishment of the ‘Black Caviar Trail’, a touristy venture which honours the north east’s most famous export.

Bob Norris, second from left was a familiar face at Victorian sales for many years .

In his spare time Bob was an aspiring professional golfer, but as a golfer he made one helluva farm manager. He’ll be sorely missed by his golfing buddies (and fellow horsemen) that shared the fairways with him every Thursday at Euroa.

“Bob was a real gentleman in every sense of the word,” long-time mate, Damien Gleeson, points out. “I knew the bloke for 40 years and we never once had a cross word … I’m not sure there are many people you’re close to where you could say that.

“After he finished up at Wood Nook he did the cards, organised inspections for a few vendors at various sales as their meet and greet guy and he did a terrific job. He never lost his touch either – the last yearling he bred, a Myboycharlie, was sold through us (Phoenix Broodmare Farm) in Adelaide and he had the colt looking fantastic by the time we got him at the sale.

“Bob was one of those special people you meet in life and we’ll all miss him a lot.”

Bob leaves behind wife, Freida, family, a raft of admirers and many, many friends. RIP Bobby Norris.

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