Turn it up! Plenty to look forward to

Racing has got a little sidetracked recently.

Blue and red flashing lights will do that. So will the threat of hundred-year-old tracks being shut and sold off.

Thankfully there is plenty of spring action to distract racing fans from these sagas. Things really step up this weekend.

Here are eight races to look forward to:

The Spring Cup at Alexandra Park, 8.48pm tonight.

Star Galleria was brilliant in his first outing of the season two weeks ago and I can not see him being beaten.

The intriguing aspect is how Jack's Legend will return. He was brilliant last spring and ordinary afterwards. The North Island New Zealand Cup contingent desperately needs him back in his best form.

The Free-For-All mobile trot at Alexandra Park, 9.48pm tonight.

There are only six runners in this flying mile but this looks a tricky race to predict. Speeding Spur returned like a superstar, winning fresh-up on the same track two weeks ago.

The open 1200m handicap at Avondale, 3.14pm tomorrow.

This race could mark the start of big things for Love Affair. She was brilliant coming through the grades before her flop in the Telegraph then bounced back by beating Volpe Veloce. Is she the real deal?

The Epsom Handicap at Randwick, 6.05pm tomorrow.

There are few better sights than a capacity field topping the Randwick rise in a group 1 mile. It promises to be an enthralling clash of emerging gallopers Unforgotten, D'argento and Pierata. I'm with Unforgotten.

The Metropolitan Handicap at Randwick, 6.45pm tomorrow.

Melbourne Cup horses may have already stepped out this spring, but this is a key pointer to the cup. Southern eyes will be on Otago-bred-and-owned stayer Patrick Erin. Go you good thing.

The Waikato Hunt Cup Steeplechase at Te Aroha, 4.05pm on Sunday.

This is the last race of what has been a magnificent jumping season. Rejuvenated South Islander Delacroix will clash with talented types in Thenamesbond, Yipson, Kip Keino and The Arabian Duke.

The Banks Peninsula Trotting Cup at Motukarara, 3.42pm on Sunday.

Dominion-bound trotters get a chance to boost their New Zealand Cup carnival claims on the Motukarara grass. Harrysul and Habibi Inta were excellent in the Ordeal Trotting Cup at Addington two weeks ago and could fight out the finish.

Oamaru trotter Monty Python will be improved after his first-up hitout at on his home track last weekend.

The Underwood Stakes at Caulfield, 7.30pm on Sunday.

Since 1963 only one horse - Northerly - has managed to win consecutive editions of this 1800m feature. Kiwi mare Bonneval could make that two.

She takes on Melbourne Cup favourite Humidor.

Happy trails.



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