Old rivalry reignited at the 40th Grafton Bridge to Bridge
A JUNIOR world champion, a top-three senior skier and some of Australia's fastest boats will highlight this weekend's Disco Marine Grafton Bridge to Bridge Ski Classic.
Sydney's Jack Harrison is the current junior world champion, and will be on show early behind Seven in the under-16 boys competition.
Codie Rigg, who is also from Sydney, will attract plenty of attention behind super class boat Top Gun as he sets out to show the Clarence Valley why he is ranked the No.3 skier in the world.
But all eyes will be on the battle between super class vessels Blazen and Hellrazor, who will fight for supremacy in the main event.
Race organiser Mark Stevenson said both boats were ready to rip into the competition, adding they should challenge the record Blazen set last year.
"If the conditions prevail and they get smooth water, I think they should push the record," Stevenson said.
Blazen and Hellrazor have been the two dominant boats in the Grafton Bridge to Bridge in recent years, and have traded wins and race records.
Blazen won in 2010,
before Hellrazor took the title and record time in 2011. Blazen got revenge last year, taking 20sec off the previous best time.
Hellrazor finished under the record in second place last year, and will be keen to stand atop the podium again.
Entries have dipped slightly in comparison with last year's Grafton Bridge to Bridge, but that did not surprise Stevenson.
"We had an increase in our membership fees so it's something we expected," he said.
"There was a small drop in numbers but not as much as we were expecting. We planned for a 10% drop and it was less than that."
Out of the hundred entrants in this year's races, there will be one fully local crew looking to win on their home stage.
Bazinga, made up of driver Jason Disson, observer Michael Gain and skiers Brandon Disson and Latasha Gain, will compete in the 60 mile per hour class.
The huge weekend will get underway on Saturday morning with a static display in the upstairs carpark of Grafton Shoppingworld.
"It will be in a similar format to last year," Stevenson said.
"The pole position shootout will start that afternoon at 2.30pm and is great to watch."
The race will start at 9.30am on Sunday.