In the slog of a pre-season running in torrential rain, the fire burns for Shellharbour's James Bell.
At 23, Bell has all the motivation he needs to be a key weapon in the Sydney Swans forward line, in the belief they will be a premiership threat.
Bell played 12 games last year, building on eight in 2020 and two in his debut AFL campaign in 2019.
He's refined his skill set under the watchful eye of 2012 premiership captain Jarrad McVeigh, now the Swans forwards coach.
And Bell has felt the pain of a one-point elimination final loss to arch-rivals Greater Western Sydney, cutting short a campaign which was only denied a top four spot by percentage. So this time Bell believes he has built the platform to make his mark.
"I've spent the last couple of years learning," he said.
"I've been doing a lot of high speed work which really suits me, we haven't missed a session, even with all the rain we've had, it's just about putting the work in.
"We've been building, there's a young group that I've been part of and we're focussed on taking our opportunities this year."
The Swans last four scores in the finals clash with the Giants were all behinds, as they fell 11.8 (74) to 10.13 (73), despite keeping GWS goalless in the final term.
It came after they finished sixth on the ladder with a 15-7 record, the same as Brisbane and grand finalists Western Bulldogs, and four games clear of the Giants.
Melbourne then went on to claim their first premiership in 57 years at the end of a COVID interrupted year where the decider was played at Perth's Optus Stadium.
As 2021 slipped through their fingers, Bell has worked with McVeigh to add value to the Swans forward line.
"I've been training in that high half-forward role," he said. "A lot of boys are competing in different spots and looking for a midfield role.
"But I want to be elite in one position, not just good in every position. Macca (McVeigh) has helped me a lot and made me feel like I belong in the team and we've got a lot of exciting, hard running in the group, which suits me."
McVeigh retired in 2019 after a decorated career of 325 games and 201 goals, before moving seamlessly into the Swans coaching staff.
Bell admits McVeigh's experience is invaluable.
"In his last couple of years as a player, he was already a coach within the group," he said. "Not only was he a great player, he also understands the culture and trademarks that we stick by at the club.
"The big thing I've done, particularly in this pre-season is surround myself with the right people, that you respect and want to follow in their footsteps."
The bright lights of the AFL hasn't blinded Bell from keeping a connection with his junior club at Shellharbour.
"It keeps me grounded," he said. "The club donated footballs to them at the end of last year and (Shellharbour Suns president) Steve Ashworth sends me a message every now and then.
"We've got a good relationship and helps me chase my goals with the Swans."
GWS GIANTS v SYDNEY SWANS