Date: May 06 2012
HOOP Kevin Sweeney and trainer Keith Dryden are refusing to rest on their laurels as the Canberra premiership leaders enter the final six meetings of the season at Thoroughbred Park.
Despite Sweeney and Dryden enjoying considerable success up until now to lead their competitions by healthy margins, they understand a lot can happen over the next ten weeks.
Sweeney is four wins clear in the jockey's premiership to reigning title holder Brendan Ward and he attributed a lot of his success to the form of Dryden's firing stable.
''Unless you're riding for a leading trainer, you're not going to win the premiership and that's not just Canberra, that's everywhere,'' Sweeney said.
''At the moment Keith's leading the premiership at Canberra and it just so happens that I'm leading the jockey's premiership, but that can turn around at any time so I'm not confident at all.
''I'm just keen to keep going. I've been riding for the leading trainer again and that helps a lot. I've also pretty much been injury-free, and again, that can change any time too.''
While Dryden's lead of 16 wins to Matt Dale's nine in the trainer's premiership appears insurmountable, Dryden's confidence about winning the top prize is not much higher than Sweeney's.
Dryden has trained in Canberra for 35 years and he had to wait a long time before winning his first Canberra trainer's premiership in the 2007-08 season.
He acknowledges that he can still be beaten, and will be more confident about claiming a second title if he can stretch his lead in the upcoming meetings.
''You can get run down in these things. The thing about it is, if I was to put another couple of wins on the board over the next six meetings I might be hard to run down, but at this stage anything's possible,'' Dryden said.
''Sweens and I have been working together for quite a few years now and have a good relationship. He does a good job, but it's a team effort.
''He's got the opportunity to ride for my stable to win the premiership, and I've obviously got a chance to win it with him riding for me.''
They have combined for 13 wins at a strike rate of 27 per cent.
In the apprentice's premiership 17-year-old Kayla Nisbet leads with six wins, two clear of her nearest rival.
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