How did you first come to support the Raiders?

I was born into a Raiders family. Ironically, given the upcoming game, my dad was a South Sydney fan until the Raiders came along in '82. Being Canberra born and bred, he ditched the Rabbitohs for the Raiders and the rest is history.

The Raiders fans are a famously loyal crew who #BleedGreen. What is your favourite Raiders' moment?

My top Raiders moment has to be the '89 Grand Final. I was only young at the time but I’ve watched it enough that I can’t tell if my memories are game day memories or the memories of watching my grandparent’s VHS copy of the game. They come from behind to win thanks to a late John “Chicka” Ferguson try, an O’Sullivan field goal in extra time and Steve Jackson’s infamous try is the stuff dreams are made of. Greatest Grand Final of all time and won by the good guys. Doesn’t get any better than that.

What’s the best Raiders fan outfit you’ve seen?

There are plenty of dress-ups going on at Raiders games and the outfits only get better. The more lime and garish, the better. Custom made suits, shoes, top hats, Viking outfits - you name it.

For a few in our fan crew, on special occasions, we dress up in custom Raiders suits we had made specially. It all started out with just one of our friends who was brave enough to be the first suit designer and fashion model. We liked what we saw. The lime green power suit worn proudly by one of the brave women in our group is a stand-out outfit.

Raiders fan Russell wearing a lime green suit a top a Canberra Milk carton.
Is this the best suit you've ever seen? Raiders fan, Russell Ayres, wears the Raiders' green with pride at GIO Stadium.

GIO Stadium is sure to be full of musical tributes to fans' teams at this legendary preliminary final. Do you have a go-to #WeAreRaiders chant?

The Viking Clap is fantastic. It started out as a bit of a special occasion pre-game ritual but was so popular that it’s now done at every home game. Fans love it and it pumps the players up.

Each year, Canberrans wear their green pride on their sleeves. In the past, Canberra milk has made lime milk and bakeries have made green bread. What green delicacy are you on the lookout for?

I’d give just about any green food a go at this time of year. Sausages, sure, bread, of course, milk, absolutely. That unripe mango, bring it on. That sandwich I accidentally left in my work bag a few weeks ago…maybe not. But the more novelty green food in the capital, the better.

Canberra Raiders fans at GIO Stadium waving the team flag proudly.
Canberra Raiders fans at GIO Stadium waving the team flag proudly.

Where do you fuel up before the match?

There are so many great places around Canberra to have a few beverages before the game. The Labor Club in Belconnen has always been a good place to get a feed, have a laugh with friends and then catch the shuttle to the game.

How do you recommend celebrating a Raiders’ win in Canberra?

This might sound out of the box, but get yourself to a karaoke room that has Tina Turner’s Simply the Best on the playlist. Take those good feelings and re-live the glory days. Fingers crossed this year though, we might associate another song with Raiders success. 

Find your best lime green outfit and get your tickets to see the Canberra Raiders take on the South Sydney Rabbitohs in the preliminary final at GIO Stadium (27 September).

Tickets go on sale to members at 10am on Monday 23 September and to the general public at 10am on Tuesday 24 September.