An outstanding solo try from Will Genia saw the Reds upset the odds and land their first Super Rugby title in 16 years by beating the Crusaders 18-13 in a thrilling final at Suncorp Stadium.
The sides were locked at 13-13 with just 12 minutes to play when the Australia scrum-half received the ball 10 yards inside his own half following a turnover. He initially appeared to be boxed in by defenders but quick footwork saw him break free into Crusaders' territory.
Genia still had plenty of work to do but a dummy to his outside support as they reached the 22 gave him just enough room and momentum to slide over the line.
The Crusaders, the most successful side in the competition's history, launched a series of desperate late attacks, but it was not enough as their Brisbane-based opponents closed out the victory.
The Crusaders had led 7-6 at the break thanks to a fantastic converted try by Daniel Carter, Quade Cooper responding with two penalties for the Reds.
Carter kicked two penalties of his own after the break but Digby Ioane's spectacular try levelled the scores, before Genia struck the decisive blow.