Murwillumbah trainer Dunn in breakout year
After a remarkable period of success in Sydney, Murwillumbah trainer Matt Dunn will be heading to January’s yearling sales to take the next step.
Dunn sits equal 10th on the Sydney trainer’s premiership courtesy of his record six wins in Highway races for country-trained horses in a little more than three months.
He added a victory in a $100,000 race for bush horses and Madotti took the tally to eight when she won at Rosehill late last month.
Dunn is going at a remarkable 50 per cent strike rate with 12 of his 16 runners in Sydney this season finishing in the top three.
Before setting up his own operation almost seven years ago, Dunn spent a decade in Sydney as stable foreman to Gerald Ryan where he stables his horses after the 10-hour float trip from the NSW-Queensland border.
When Highway purses were elevated to $60,000, Dunn made a concerted push to target the races and has successfully drawn the publicity to attract new clients and quality horses.
“This is the first year I’m going into January with orders with people to spend decent amounts of money,” Dunn said.
“Every other year we’ve gone there and had to buy them then beg, borrow and steal to syndicate.”
While the first phase of his expansion plan has come off, Dunn will remain patient with his ambition to establish a Sydney base.
He said stable stars Perfect Dare and Madotti have been competitive in Sydney, but he wants to be armed with the quality to make a splash in the Harbour City.
“You need 15 or 20 of those horses to even contemplate doing it,” he said.
At the same time as Sydney has been a happy hunting ground, Dunn has charged to equal fourth in the Brisbane trainers’ premiership with 13 wins.
As for Saturday, Dunn is waiting for the barrier draw before he decides whether Perfect Dare will run in a benchmark handicap over 1200m at Rosehill.
Perfect Dare ran second at the same track on December 3 after jumping from the widest gate and working early to take the lead.
A bad draw will prompt Dunn to head to Brisbane with Perfect Dare but either way, it will be the Group Three-placed gelding’s final start before the $1 million Magic Millions Sprint on the Gold Coast on January 14.
Stablemate Madame De Ban is set to take her place in the Highway Handicap.
“She’s as good as any of these others that have gone down there and been competitive,” Dunn said.
Story courtesy http://www.aapmegaform.com.au