"There is always pressure when you’re sailing at Manly,"

Pressure? What pressure?

Manly's club championship leader Fire Stopping is eating up the heat as it prepares to make a significant down payment on the last piece of silverware available this season.

The Joe Turner-skippered skiff can all but wrap up the sought-after club title with victory in Saturday's penultimate heat.

A Fire Stopping win would make it almost impossible for second-placed Fluid Building (Clint Bowen) to make up the leeway between the boats on the overall pointscore.

"It's really Fire Stopping's to lose…they are in the box seat," the cagey Bowen said.

If Bowen's comments were meant to apply the pressure on Turner and his crew, it won't work.

Sheethand James Bury argues his boat is under the gun each and every Saturday.

"There is always pressure when you’re sailing at Manly," he said.

"The racing is always intense and you only have to have one thing go wrong, as we saw the other week with one of Clint's crew falling off the boat, and someone is there to pounce.

"We will approach this race no different to any other week.

"We are enjoying sailing with each other, we have been together for three seasons now and we trust each other in the boat.

"We know we have a well prepared boat, so we will just go for a sail and see what happens."

Fire Stopping won the state championship earlier in the season and headed into the national titles as a hot favourite.

Unfortunately things didn’t go to plan and, for the second year running, Turner had to be content with a runner-up placing.

That's why the club championship has been circled so heavily.

"To win it would be something special, especially given the quality of the fleet at Manly," Bury said.

"But we are not about to start counting our chickens and writing victory speeches any time soon.

"There are still two races to go and racing against the likes of Clint, who has won around eight club champs, we know he isn’t going to lie down and hand it to us.

"We will get pushed hard all the way."

Created By
Michael Chittenden
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