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Matt Dunn will be smiling like it is his first winner if Sovereign Nation can break a two-year drought at Eagle Farm

Matt Dunn has trained 69 winners already this season but he will be smiling like it is his first if Sovereign Nation can break a two-year drought at Eagle Farm.

Sovereign Nation is topweight in Saturday’s TAB Open Handicap (1400m) in which he has drawn wide (14).

The gelding has not won since the Listed VRC Stakes at Flemington in March 2018 when he was trained by the Lindsay Park team.

Sovereign Nation has been with Dunn for just over a year and the Murwillumbah-based trainer has been frustrated by not being able to get a win out of the gelding.

“I couldn’t say he had run a bad race for me. There just always seems to be something go wrong which is just enough to deny him a win,” Dunn said.

At his most recent run when first-up Sovereign Nation was second in an Open Handicap (1200m) at Eagle Farm.

“His effort was terrific. The leader walked early but was still five lengths clear before sprinting home in sub 34 seconds,” Dunn said.

“It meant we had no hope at all of catching him. Sovereign Nation hasn’t got the early pace to put on pressure but he got home better than anything else.”

In Victoria, Sovereign Nation won the Group Two Stutt Stakes and was fourth in the Group One Caulfield Guineas won by Press Statement.

He also finished second to Tosen Stardom in the Group One Toorak Handicap and fourth in the Group One Sir Rupert Clarke.

“I still think there are multiple wins left in him,” Dunn said.

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