Matt Dunn is content with his decision to establish a permanent base in Sydney, although he is hoping to expand his metropolitan presence over the coming seasons.
The leading Northern Rivers trainer, whose Murwillumbah stables have thankfully been spared from this week’s flooding, has been operating a small Sydney team since the middle of the year.
While he would like room for a few more horses – Dunn has 18 boxes at Warwick Farm and would ideally like to double his capacity – he feels he is on the right path.
“It’s working well. The positive is there are a few people now approaching us to take horses to train in Sydney and that’s what we were looking for,” Dunn said.
“We obviously had to give up the country status so we’re not eligible for Highway races or the country-only races anymore but it was the decision we made at the time and I think it was the right one.”
Dunn will be represented by Badoosh in the Bisley Workwear Handicap (1400m) at Randwick on Saturday when the four-year-old resumes after a career-best campaign.
Badoosh posted back-to-back wins at Rosehill and Kensington during the early spring and had come to the end of his run when unplaced behind She’s Ideel at Randwick in October.
Dunn is keen to get the gelding to the Gold Coast for the $250,000 Magic Millions Open Handicap (1800m) on January 16 and will give him two lead up runs in Sydney.
“He has always been a horse that has shown he’s got above-average ability,” Dunn said.
“Getting his head around the whole thing has been the biggest issue but he’s got there now and his last prep was really strong.
“He’s in a race (on Saturday) that’s a bit higher grade than what he is eligible for but he trialled well the other day down at Kembla.
“He’s being set for the Magic Millions, probably the 1800 metre race, so he will need two runs going into that.”
Badoosh will have 13 rivals, headed by The Kosciuszko runner-up Redouble and last-start winner Edison.
Dunn also reported smart sprinter Snitz had failed to come up this campaign and had been spelled after his disappointing performance in the Razor Sharp Handicap last weekend.