Will Hodgman's decision to step down as Tasmania's 45th Premier caught most by surprise despite several whispers circulating before last year's state election.
As recent as December, Mr Hodgman denied he was looking to resign to allow his successor time to build momentum before the next poll.
The word on the street has consistently pointed towards Treasurer Peter Gutwein as the most sensible replacement considering his consistent track record in government and ambition.
Since the shock news, it appears to be a race between two Northern Tasmanians - Mr Gutwein and long-standing Deputy Premier Jeremy Rockliff.
It's unclear if Mr Rockliff will contest a Parliamentary Liberal Party ballot next week due to a perceived lack of ambition.
He is well liked and may decide to do the statesmanlike thing in a bid to steady what has been a rocky 12 months with controversies and ministerial resignations distracting from general business.
Gutwein, although not as popular, is seen as a man that gets the job done and a premier based in Bass may go some way to breaking up the Hobart-centric bureaucracy.
Not since Tony Rundle in 1998 has a Northerner been in charge.
Hodgman has been the calm and collected leader Tasmania needed and can hold his head high for helping overturn the state's economic fortunes from the dark Labor-Green days in 2014, turning the state into a prime tourist destination, commitment to domestic violence services and reforming state high schools to include years 11 and 12.
He will go down in history as a great Liberal premier, but as Mr Hodgman said - the job is not done.
The next premier has some challenges to overcome with the top priorities health spending and service delivery, overcoming a big GST blackhole to improve departments crying out for more cash, fixing the housing disaster and forcing local government reform to name a few along with a conundrum of a thin colleague talent pool to step up as a minister.