They say 10,600 passed through the Manuka Oval gates before surging onto the field when the final siren bookended Canberra football's finest hour.
"Maybe people had crawled under the fence, because it felt like there was 50,000 in there," former ACT defender John Miller said.
Anyone who was there will tell you this was a day they will never forget, as a sprinkling of stars and some hard-nosed park footballers upset the highly-fancied Victorians.
This Monday marks 40 years since the ACT stunned the VFL in an interstate Australian rules showdown at Manuka Oval in 1980, winning 13.17 (95) to 11.16 (82) in front of a packed house.
Miller came across his copy of the ACT's official team photo a couple of weeks ago and the memories came flooding back as he glanced at the faces donning blue and gold jumpers.
There was Alex Jesaulenko, one of the game's greatest players and perhaps Canberra's finest export. Collingwood's Ian Lowe and Footscray's Robert Anderson had also flown in to link up with their home side.
In the middle sat Kevin "Cowboy" Neale, the St Kilda premiership player who had found a home in Ainslie and taken the reins of the ACT as player-coach.
"Nobody expected we would beat a VFL side, and it did have plenty of stars in it. It had Malcolm Blight, it had Francis Bourke, Mark Lee, Rene Kink, Robert Dipierdomenico. For the ACT to take them on and beat them was just unbelievable," Miller said.
"I was playing off half-back actually, and to my dismay, I ran out on the ground and I was playing on Rene Kink. I was a reasonable size, but when I stood next to Rene Kink I thought 'gee whiz, I feel like I'm playing a person twice my size'.
"You didn't get a lot of time to think. The game took off and we started really well that day. It was Bill Stephen who coached the VFL side, and speaking with him afterwards, their players were not even switched on.
"By the time they thought they better get cracking in that last quarter it was too late. They couldn't get into gear, they never gelled. Probably most of them watched the Wimbledon final the night before. Who knows?"
Three Victorian sides were playing that weekend. Most saw the outfit in Canberra as their second best - but some from the football-mad state scrambled to label it their thirds after the shock loss.
Perhaps the most furious was VFL president Allen Aylett, who is said to have claimed at the post-match function many would never wear the Big V again.
It certainly gave Queanbeyan product and then-Footscray youngster Anderson plenty of ammunition when he returned to Whitten Oval the next week.
"I was meant to go back to Melbourne either that night or early Monday, but I didn't go back until Tuesday," Anderson said.
"Not to say I was out partying all that time, but we certainly had a big night on the Sunday night. When I went back to training at Footscray, I ran onto the track and all of the boys were clapping me.
"One of the guys who became captain, Jim Edmond, played for that Victorian team. It was quite funny when I went back to training."
It was a moment he will always remember, much like assistant coach Stan Alves' ability to create a belief the ACT had never felt, or Neale's stirring fourth quarter masterclass, or the deafening roar which almost drowned out the final siren.
"It's one of those things," former Eastlake star Keith Miller said, "now you've reminded me, I can think about it for the rest of the day. To be quite honest I had forgotten it was 40 years. It was probably never going to happen again. We were honest enough to think 'let's enjoy this'. Now and again something happens in life that is just an incredible achievement."