27 years ago today, racism in Australia was changed forever.

It was Round 4, 1993, and the Saints hadn't beaten Collingwood at Victoria Park since 1976.

The venomous home crowd singled out two young Indigenous Saints, Nicky Winmar and Gilbert McAdam, welcoming the pair with a torrent of stinging slurs and humiliation.

Both men still remember the spitting.

Healing the wounds: Winmar and McAdam make their way up the same race at Victoria Park 20 years on.

The abuse was so horrendous McAdam's father - who'd travelled from Alice Springs to watch his son play - walked out of the ground in tears.

A pact was made that they'd respond. And respond they did.

Five goals to McAdam, 25 touches to Winmar and five Brownlow votes between them.

L-R: Dale Kickett, McAdam and Winmar celebrate after their 1992 Elimination Final win over Collingwood.

And still, the abuse came.

Finally, this. An ecstatic Winmar, overcome with the euphoria of the sweetest victory, began blowing kisses to the irate black and white army.

Nicky Winmar's famous stance is captured in this iconic photo by Wayne Ludbey.

"I'm black, and I'm proud to be black."