The 2016 Autumn Classic nominations have been released and Mahuta is a surprise inclusion in the early entries for the Group 2 event that will be held at Caulfield on Saturday.
Mahuta started his racing career with two honest performances at Seymour and Echuca in September last year, but since trainer Darren Weir applied blinkers he has recorded six wins from as many starts and stamped himself as one of the most talented three-year-olds in the country.
The Flying Spur colt claimed his maiden race win with a dominant six lengths victory in the Winning Edge Presentations Maiden (1450m) at Kyneton on October 8 and he made his black-type debut with a tough win in the Listed Gothic Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on October 17.
Mahuta proved that win was no fluke when he scored another brave win in the Group 3 Carbine Club Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on October 31 and he finished his spring campaign with another win in the Group 2 Sandown Guineas (1600m) on November 14.
Weir elected to send Mahuta to Queensland for the Magic Millions Guineas (1400m) at the Gold Coast on January 9 and he led from start to finish to record a fifth straight win before he repeated the doze when he returned to Melbourne racing in the Group 2 Autumn Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on February 13.
Mahuta is not the only last start winner that has been included in the Autumn Classic nominations and the likes of Charlevoix, Flying Light, Hattori Hanzo, Mystic, Prior Engagement, Tally and Top Ravine could also contest the $200,000 event this weekend.
Mahuta has a 30 point handicap rating gap on the rest of his rivals in the Autumn Classic field and Hursley and Tally are the closest rivals to the classy galloper.
Hursley returned to the races with a flat performance behind I’ll Take The Jag in the Tab.Com.Au Handicap (1400m) at Warwick Farm on February 10, but before that he won the Listed TCL Curved TV Stakes (1800m) at Flemington on November 5, while Godolphin-owned Tally has recorded two wins from as many starts since he returned to the races.
UCI Stakes winner Ayers Rock, Mick Price-trained Celtic Tiger, Victoria Derby flop Extra Choice, David Brideoake-trained Harden, the consistent Hoplites, Godolphin-owned Italy, the well-bred Last Typhoon, Carbine Club Stakes placegetter Patch Adams and John Price-trained Real Son Of A Gun round out the Autumn Classic nominations.