Judy and Andrew Hawke hope their lucky streak will extend to tomorrow's Melbourne Cup where the Whangarei couple will enjoy VIP treatment after winning an APN regional newspapers' prize package.
They leave today on a five-day trip which includes flying with the race sponsors Emirates, staying at a luxury Sofitel hotel and having prime grandstand seating at tomorrow's big meeting.
While the Hawkes have visited Melbourne before, this will be their first time to the world-famous Melbourne Cup carnival.
"The only races I've ever been to before were at Dargaville about 30 years ago," said Mrs Hawke who won the competition for subscribers to APN regional newspapers throughout New Zealand.
When contacted by APN and told of her win, Mrs Hawke thought it was someone playing a prank. The only thing she has ever won before was a bottle of whisky about 30 years ago - and she doesn't drink alcohol.
"We saved it all those years and opened it on our daughter's wedding day," Mrs Hawke said.
Preparations for the event as famous for its fashion in the field as it is the racing has included going out and buying a hat, destined to be "relegated to the back of the wardrobe until another suitable occasion comes up".