The fight pitted Liberal incumbent Sarah Henderson, who has a hardworking reputation as a local MP, against long-time Labor councillor Libby Coker who was contesting her third election in the area at state or federal level.
If Ms Henderson retains the seat, the electorate’s 111,000 voters will be showered with the equivalent of $26,500 each thanks to the Coalition’s promises.
Both candidates made final frenetic efforts as they honed in on multiple rapidly growing, urbanising sections of electorate to maximise the value from the final day’s campaigning.
Ms Henderson said she was proud of her campaign and had worked hard until the end as she spoke with the last trickle of voters at the Grovedale Community Hub in the fading sunlight.
«It is a very, very tight race. There is no doubt about it. Every vote counts in Corangamite,» she said.
Ms Henderson said she had been a «warrior» for every community she represented from the suburbs to agricultural enclaves.
Her final day focused on Torquay, Grovedale on Geelong’s outskirts, the rapidly growing Armstrong Creek and Ocean Grove.
Ms Coker started her day in her home town of Aireys Inlet before moving on to booths in Torquay, then Armstrong Creek and over to Ocean Grove and Leopold just outside of Geelong.
Both major parties threw substantial resources at Corangamite, which also takes in the tip of Geelong and all of the Bellarine Peninsula.
The Morrison government committed $2 billion for fast rail from Geelong to Melbourne, while Ms Henderson took every opportunity to spruik her commitment to 50-metre pools in both Torquay and the north Bellarine.
In total, the government made almost $3 billion worth of promises in Corangamite across 41 different proposals.
By comparison Labor campaigned on more global themes like climate change, wage growth and education funding. Ms Cokersaid communities in Corangamite would not be won over by the Liberals’ big-spending campaign.
«I think people are very disappointed that the Liberals have tried to win the electorate with those sorts of promises,» she said.
Ms Coker told The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald she had felt a clear desire for a change of government in the electorate throughout her campaign.
«I’ve had a number of people who have said they’re traditional Liberal voters but they feel the party is no longer representing their values,» she said.
«Many people have said to me they’re disappointed with the populist approach of the Liberals. And many are concerned about a lack of policy.»
The environment featured prominently during the battle for Corangamite, thrust to the centre of the debate by independent candidate Damien Cole who used his platform as ambassador for the Surfrider Foundation to protest plans to drill for oil in the Great Australian Bight.
Both Ms Henderson and Ms Coker expressed their personal opposition to the project during the campaign.
Regardless of who wins the election, there will also be an inquiry into the worrying cancer rate in the Bellarine region after community concerns were aired in The Age, with both parties committing to an investigation into the cause of the illness.
Benjamin is a state political reporter