The men's eight put an exclamation mark on an extraordinary hour in Tokyo, winning gold from lane two in a brutal display of power.
Always a chance for a medal, few genuinely thought they would match the favoured Germans but New Zealand took control at the halfway mark, put distance on the field at the three-quarter pole and never looked like relinquish it in the home straight.
Cue scenes of jubilation as the crew smashed the tranquil Sea Forest waterway with their fists, screamed in exultation and engaged in the sort of awkward hugs the confined spaces of a skiff allows for.
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It is the first gold in the eight since Munich – forever remembered as the first time God Defend New Zealand had rung out over an Olympic tannoy – and the first medal in the discipline since Montreal in 1976.
Driven on by pairs legend Hamish Bond in the second seat, the names of the other seven will forever be enshrined on the walls of Rowing New Zealand at Lake Karapiro.
Remember them: Thomas Mackintosh, Bond, Tom Murray, Michael Brake, Dan Williamson, Phillip Wilson, Shaun Kirkham, Matt MacDonald and cox Sam Bosworth.
New Zealand won in 5m 24.64s, ahead of Germany by .96s and Great Britain, who were 1.09s behind.
In collecting his third gold medal, Bond became the first New Zealander to step on the top step of the dais in three successive games, following gold at London and Rio with Eric Murray.
He could be joined by Lisa Carrington at this same stretch of water next week. With three, he sits one behind Ian Ferguson's record tally and alongside the legendary Peter Snell and Paul MacDonald.
Bond admitted he wasn't convinced the team, who qualified for the Games last-minute and were forced to advance via a repechage race, could do it.
"To be honest, waking up this morning, I thought we could get first, I thought we could get last," he told Sky Sport.
"I knew that this week we really established a rhythm of how we want to row and we made a conscious decision early in the week, basically we were going to live by that rhythm or die by that rhythm."
Their belief gradually grew throughout the campaign, with the team taking inspiration from the women's eight - who narrowly missed out on a gold medal of their own.
"We had shown potential throughout the year and started to believe more and more that we were capable of pulling it off. To have done it with these guys...unreal. Some of these guys, 20, 21, to turn up to an Olympic final – Dan (Williamson)'s never even been to a senior regatta. To turn up to an Olympic final and win a medal, I'm so proud of everyone's efforts throughout the year," Bond said.
"And also of the whole team. The women's team have been our benchmark for the whole year. Obviously, being away tucked down in New Zealand we haven't had that international racing, but we've been comparing ourselves to that women's crew for the whole 12 months – if we could get up to their benchmark, we were going to be in with a shout.
"So maximum respect to them and Kerri [Gowler] and Grace [Prendergast]. The perseverance of Emma Twigg, she came into the squad the same time as me, for her to overcome that adversity – two fourth places – and to come back from that to win a gold medal, I'm just so pleased for her."