A firm surface could put the breaks on any potential return for Mugatoo this weekend with Lees continuing a cautious approach that could stop his star galloper returning this Saturday in the Listed Spear Chief Handicap at Eagle Farm.
Lees has kept a close eye on weather conditions in Queensland with Mugatoo set to return to the track after more than a year out through injury.
Mugatoo suffered a tendon injury in the 2021 Doomben Cup which sidelined the import for over 12 months. He is nearing a return to the track though having completed intensive training as well as two barrier trials.
The Eagle Farm track was rated a Good 4 by the end of last week’s Queensland Derby and Lees is concerned that with no rain forecast it could be unwise to start Mugatoo off on the wrong surface.
“We want to get an idea for how firm the track is,” Lees said.
“He is still in Newcastle at the moment and the float is ready to go for tomorrow night but we want to keep an eye on things.
“I am on the Gold Coast right now and it‘s very windy, that track may dry right up.
“We've waited this long (to give him a run) and might just wait a little longer.”
A final decision on whether Mugatoo will return to the track will be made later in the week with the expectation that should he miss this Saturday a run in the June Stakes or Winter Stakes could be the next call.