Grey matter: Chautauqua is well fancied in the T.J. Smith stakes.Grey matter: Chautauqua is well fancied in the T.J. Smith stakes. Photo: Robert Cianflone

Straight-track specialist Chautauqua hasn’t raced north of the border for almost a year, but the grey’s return to Sydney hasn’t fazed the Hawkes Racing partnership ahead of the mouth-watering TJ Smith Stakes clash at Randwick on Saturday.

Chautauqua’s last appearance in NSW was a fifth in the Scone Guineas when stretched out to 1400 metres last May, but he has since proved lethal down the Flemington straight in winning the Bobbie Lewis and Gilgai Stakes.

His only defeats since spending the majority of his time in Melbourne have come in brave efforts in the Darley Classic and the Newmarket Handicap, but the four-year-old is favourite to snare a group 1 at his third attempt against Terravista, Lankan Rupee and co.