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Trainer Michael Nolan expects Sir Donald to improve markedly when he returns to a dry track at Doomben.

Sir Donald was having his first run back from a spell when he laboured into fourth place in a race at Toowoomba two weeks ago which Nolan put down to the heavy track.

“I don’t mind a thunderstorm or a bit of rain for him. But we had heavy rain all week and the track was wet to say the least,” Nolan said.

“The run was totally out of character for him.”

“But I had no choice but to run him because of the way the programs have been of late.”

Nolan has booked premier apprentice Tiffani Brooker for Sir Donald in Saturday’s Open Handicap (1050m).

“With Tiff’s claim and a drier track I would expect a far better run from him,” Nolan said.

Sir Donald has won four races at Saturday’s distance including his only run at Doomben.

Nolan is also confident Dream Finnish will be hard to beat in the Open Handicap (1630m).

Dream Finnish won first-up at Ipswich and had no luck when ninth at Doomben last Saturday.

“Once we drew wide at her last start we had no hope. But again we had to run because of the way the races fall,” Nolan said.

“Ron Stewart rode her and was upbeat when he came back to scale. He said she ran into a dead end and should have finished much closer.”

Nolan hopes to get Dream Finnish out to a middle distance in the next month.

“But again there isn’t a lot of those races around for her,” he added.

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