This Saturday the Liberal Party will select its new federal candidate for Hume.
Whoever wins the ballot must quickly make a name for himself in the post-Schultz era. The retiring incumbent flew the Liberal flag in Hume for 14 years, smashing his opponents in five elections. It will be a hard act to follow.
So, without trying to pick a winner, we profile the four starters who'll line up for the Liberals' ‘Hume Stakes’.
DISCLAIMER: Form guide drawn from information supplied by candidates to pre-selectors. Candidates listed in last name alphabetical order.
Ross Hampton, 47, Wallaroo-based olive grower, former media and policy advisor to Howard government ministers Peter Reith, Ian Campbell and Brendon Nelson.
Liberal Party member for 13 years.
Long experience in regional and national TV as reporter/producer, before founding his own public relations/communications company, and later as an executive with global IT giant Cisco Systems.
Secretary of Goulburn Liberal party branch; board member Regional Development Australia (Southern Inland); booth organiser for Alby Schultz in the 2010 election and for Pru Goward in the last state poll.
Referees include Goulburn Mulwaree mayor Geoff Kettle, Anglican Bishop of Canberra and Goulburn Stuart Robinson, Dr Peter Shergold (former secretary, Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet), former ministers Reith, Campbell and Nelson.
Rick Mandelson, 51, Mittagong-based chartered accountant, former accounting and finance executive with a number of large companies. Also owns small businesses in Hume.
Liberal Party member for 16 years, Liberal Party Mittagong branch president, Pru Goward's state campaign director last year.
Has operated his own large accountancy practice in Southern Highlands since 1993, with a wide circle of clients and potential fundraisers.
Born in North Sydney. Family moved to Shellharbour when he was aged four, to run their own general store.
Started as a cadet with Lysaghts, Port Kembla, studying for university degree at night.
Moved to Mittagong in 1983.
Referees include Michael Baume, former Australian Consul-General to New York, former senator, and parliamentary secretary to John Howard as treasurer; Michael Ball, media mining and energy commentator, chairman Bradman Foundation.
Ed Storey, 42, Yass-based grazier/businessman, secretary of Liberal Party Yass branch, executive councillor and member of wool committee of NSW Farmers Association.
Liberal Party member for four years. Fourth generation businessman and grazier.
Family has lived in the middle of Hume electorate for 120 years. Sydney University graduate in Economics and Commercial Law.
Worked for various rural-related initiatives, including privatisation of Yass Saleyards, scholarship funding for Yass and District Education Foundation, Rural Lands Planning Committee, Yass Landholder Action Group, National Ovine Johnes Disease management policy.
Referees include Robert Maple-Brown (chairman Maple-Brown Abbott Ltd, Sydney); Charlie and Pip Merriman, Boorowa; Yass Valley mayor Nic Carmody; John Manwarring, chairman wool committee NSW Farmers Association; James Jackson, director Sheepmeat Council of Australia.
Angus Taylor, 44, Sydney and Goulburn-based management consultant, co-founder of Growth Farms Australia, with $300 million in agricultural assets under management across NSW; Rabobank farm leadership programs director.
Liberal Party member for 18 years.
Was brought up on a sheep and cattle property near Nimmitabel.
Sydney University Honours graduate in Laws and Economics, and 1991 Rhodes Scholar with Oxford Masters degree in Economics.
Expert witness before Senate inquiries and Competition Tribunal hearings.
Member of the NSW Liberal Party finance committee.
Referees include Tony Abbott, Barry O'Farrell, Malcolm Turnbull, Nick Greiner, Robert Webster (former Goulburn MP).
Moved with family to Goulburn six months ago.
Click this link for more from the Goulburn Post as well as an online poll.