For Newcastle owner-breeder Peter Brown, getting to the Everest with In Her Time - after a "pretty rocky year" - was all about just doing his job for close friends, the late John and Denise Cobcroft.
Brown heads the prominent horse breeding family's trust, which he hopes to take to the world stage through In Her Time - a six-year-old mare passed in as a yearling with a $40,000 reserve and now the winner of almost $2.2 million.
In Her Time, a $12 chance from gate eight in Saturday's $13 million Everest, was considered unlucky not to get a start in last year's race and went on to win the consolation, the Sydney Stakes.
This year, she was one of the first locked in, gaining the TAB slot.
But it hasn't been all plain sailing to get there.
Brown, the sole owner, gifted In Her Time's lease group an extra race with the horse after they tried to gain a new agreement, then Newcastle trainer Ben Smith was suspended just a month ago following a cobalt-related raid on his Broadmeadow stables.
In Her TIme has moved seamlessly to the care of premier Newcastle trainer Kris Lees, who also has Graff and Le Romain in the Everest, and she was an impressive third in the Premiere Stakes first-up.
Asked if he was relieved ahead of the Everest after missing a start last year, Brown said he felt no different. Although he added that the Everest was exciting, but also "pretty stressful".
"I've had a pretty rocky year with this all, but at the end of the day, I always just consider that I'm doing what you're doing - I'm doing my job," Brown said.
"And that's to take this breed, as the caretaker of this family, for Johnny and Denise Cobcroft, they were my dear friends and I promised them I'd do the best I could with the horses, and I'm just happy to be doing that."
Brown bred In Her Time from dam Hell It's Hot, from the Cobcroft breeding line, and Time Thief after earlier success.
"We bred a good horse called Let's Misbehave, who Kris [Lees] trained and she won her first three and then went in the throat," he said.
"I endeavoured to breed a full sister to her and the stallion Foreplay was infertile, so Foreplay's three-quarter brother was Time Thief. The same mare but by Redoute's Choice instead of Danehill, so I followed the breeding of Let's Misbehave, and everyone told me I was mad, but it didn't turn out too bad, didn't it?"
Brown also trusted his instinct when it came to a young In Her Time.
"Being a horseperson, you get a sense," he said. "It's like looking at a kid playing soccer. There might be 15 kids kicking a ball and one stands out.
"It's just that style you see in young situations and I saw this yearling standing at a fence and I called up all my mates, all Newcastle people, and I said 'see that filly there, she's going to be a very nice filly'. Everyone laughed at me.
"No one took any notice of her at the yearling sales. We wanted $40,000 and couldn't get it. No one at the time was buying Time Theifs, so I put my hand in my pocket.
"That's racing, though, you could buy 100 of them and they don't turn out any good."
While the immediate focus is on the Everest, Brown hoped to take In Her Time - and the Cobcroft trust - even further.
"She'll most probably have only a couple of more runs and we'll retire her I'd say," he said.
"I think we'll have an attempt to sell her but most probably an attempt to sell her internationally because we've got to try to do the best for her and get her into very good hands.
"If we get her into the hands of the best breeders in the world, then I've done my job for the Cobcrofts, taking their breed to the very best in the world."
Brown was hoping to just enjoy Everest eve after a long build-up.
"We started working on this last November," he said.
"Ben did a fantastic job. We had a plan about what we were going to do with this horse, week by week, month by month.
"And that plan's pretty well come to fruition through a lot of good work by a lot of people. Farriers, trackwork riders - Cameren Swan has done an amazing job with her - Ben and his staff followed the plan to a T. Then unfortunately we had to move from Ben to Kris Lees, but he and his staff have been fantastic as well, so it's been a very good effort by the horse people of Newcastle.
"There's been a lot of people involved. They have all been clamouring all over her, which has been very good, and looking after her and luckily she's in one piece.
"She had her final gallop and came through it beautifully and all I hope now is the rain stops so it can be a good day and we can all enjoy an event that could be pretty exciting, and we're just lucky to be part of it."