TIM EASTERBY would like to see some rain before committing Mattmu to Saturday’s Darley July Cup at Newmarket.
A Group Two winner in France last year, he has performed with great credit this season in the Duke of York Stakes and the Chipchase at Newcastle.
Those two good efforts came on good ground, but Easterby is convinced he is far more comfortable with a little more ease in conditions.
Having trained such speedsters as Pipalong, Fayr Jag and Somnus, it says plenty of the regard in which he holds Mattmu when he says the three-year-old is every bit as good as those three.
“It will need to rain, it will need to be good ground or softer, just because he acts better on it,” said the Great Habton trainer.
“He’s OK on fast ground, but he’d struggle in that company on fast ground and there’s other races for him.
“It depends where it’s right, he’s in at Deauville (Prix Maurice de Gheest) and he’s in the Sprint Cup at Haydock so there’s plenty of options but he’s better off with some juice in the ground.
“He’s right up there with the best I’ve had, especially with juice in the ground. He’s having to take on the older horses as a three-year-old. The idea was to run in three-year-old-only races, but conditions haven’t been right for him.”