Turn it up! A Bloom by another other name

Who is off to Bloom this year?

I am going and I cannot wait.

And the only thing I know for certain is I will not be referring to it as Bloom.

This week the Christchurch City Council announced it would dump using the brand New Zealand Cup and Show Week and instead call the city's spring festival Bloom.

The council has called Bloom its city brand and seasonal campaign.

If it were not 2019 I would not believe I had heard anything quite so ridiculous.

I would have thought the proud history of more than 100 years and the millions of dollars the races and the show have generated for the city would have meant New Zealand Cup and Show Week could have retained its name.

But I am sure some marketing genius who has never been to a race meeting thought otherwise.

The news is not all bad, as the council will still contribute a significant amount of money towards the racing events and promote them under their new warm, fluffy and sanitised brand.

Those headed to Riccarton for the New Zealand Cup Carnival will undoubtedly be referring to it as cup week.

The road to that meeting is starting to heat up with several high-quality fields on Saturday.

These highly competitive races could be an important guide when the big races arrive.

The New Zealand Cup Trial over 1800m at 3.04pm.

Wellington Cup runner up Dee And Gee will be a major player come New Zealand Cup time, but this race looks to have come too soon and is too short for her to show her best.

Her stablemate, Owen Patrick, picks himself on form, but may have to settle for another placing.

I am leaning towards Pamir as my top pick.

She has had enough recent racing and a highly competitive weight to be a major player.

Galway Garry opened favourite, which is surprising, given the Riccarton track will be much improved compared to his recent runs on it.

The open sprint over 1200m at 3.39pm.

This is a very similar line-up to the field that did battle over 1000m at Riccarton two weeks ago.

Kiwi Ida was very good in that previous race and is weighted to be very competitive in this, carrying with 55.5kg with her 3kg claim.

Although those two should go well, I have put the battle-hardened Rocanto in ahead of them.

He has consisntely faced stronger fields in the North Island and he has trialled well ahead of his return.

He Kin Fly adds interest to this race.

He failed in the red-hot Tarzino Trophy, but this race is a major step down in grade.

I think 1400m is his best trip, but if he returns in the mood he was in at Riccarton in the autumn he will be hard to beat.

The Canterbury Belle Stakes over 1200m at 4.14pm.

Although Folk Dress was only lightly tested against quality opposition as a 2yr-old, being from the Jamie Richards barn she has to be respected.

She has trialled well before her resumption and should run a big race.

Miss Federer beat Folk Dress last season and can test her again if rider Kylie Williams can find her a decent run from her horror 14 barrier draw.

Her resuming run was very good behind the impressive Woodcote Lass.

Woodcote Lass has also drawn near to the carpark in barrier 15.

Her first-up win at Riccarton caught the eye and like, Miss Federer, she just needs a decent run to go close in this.

She is my top pick in an even race, despite her horror draw.

Intimidate and Bronte Beach went well behind Woodcote Lass and look place contenders again.

Happy trails.


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