Mahuta will race over 1800 metres for the first time in the 2016 Autumn Stakes at Caulfield on Saturday, but jockey Brad Rawiller is confident that it will not be an issue for the tough colt.
Rawiller has partnered Mahuta in his past four race starts and he has steered the son of Flying Spur to impressive victories in the Group 3 Carbine Club Stakes (1600m), Group 2 Sandown Guineas (1600m), $2 million Magic Millions Guineas (1400m) and the Group 2 Autumn Stakes (1400m).
Mahuta only just held on to win the Autumn Stakes at Caulfield on February 13, but he told Racing Ahead that the Autumn Classic is a completely different race and one in which Mahuta will be very tough to beat.
“I think he will be better,” Weir said.
“I have always said that with his cruising speed he gets into a good rhythm.
“There is no question the other day that we wouldn’t have wanted it a metre past 1400, but it was a different race with a different tempo and a different field.
“When it is an 1800 metre race you ride it completely different and what was so good about that run was that he had 59 and he was giving the horse that almost beat us five kilos.
“He couldn’t have done much more than he did.”
The Group 1 Australian Guineas (1600m) at Flemington next Saturday was expected to be the next race start for Mahuta and Rawiller revealed that the Group 1 event could still be on the agenda for the three-year-old.
Rawiller said that Weir will make a decision after Saturday whether Mahuta will back-up in the Australian Guineas and the talented hoop is confident that the Melbourne Cup winning training will make the correct decision.
“It is still being decided what the best way forward is,” Rawiller said.
“I think that it is the perfect race for him tomorrow over 1800 with set weights and it is probably the right time to be stepping up that extra 200 metres.
“The other side of that is if he were to run in the Guineas he is coming back 200 metres and it is against the top liners.
“That is where Darren Weir is the best in the land and he really needs to be commended with this horse.”
Mahuta is currently available at 2016 Autumn Stakes odds of $1.90 with Ladbrokes and he is a clear favourite from Tally ($5), Powderworks ($14), Flying Light ($15), Patch Adams ($15) and Charlevoix ($15).