INVESTORS cheered during the week, perhaps convinced that the latest rearrangement of deckchairs on the good ship euro will do the trick and right the heavily listing vessel.
In the mix was heartening economic data from China and Europe, which pushed resource stocks higher. Despite that, the market slipped ever so slightly in the final week. Still, the top 200 companies finish 3 per cent higher over the entirety of our race, a figure put to shame by our newly crowned champion of champions, AFR analyst Peter Jones.
After hitting his straps last week, Pete ran away with the race in the final days, thanks to a barnstorming performance from Horizon Oil.
His hero stock was uranium miner Paladin Energy (up 30 per cent overall). Even the "ailing" retail sector coughed up big bucks: David Jones and JB Hi-Fi generated returns in excess of 7 per cent. Pete could do no wrong.
Pottsy did fantastically well to leap from fifth to second with a portfolio crammed with speccy miners. Peninsula Energy, Tap Oil and gold explorer Anglo Australian produced double-digit returns. Kudos, Pottsy.
That means researcher Katrina Christie slips one spot to claim a creditable third place. Vantage Goldfields cruelled her chances of silver after it plunged 11 per cent. Our other stalwarts - Richard Pritchard, Doreen and the Dartboard - had horrid runs.
That opened the door for reader Angus Hutchinson to claim fifth spot. Long-term investor Varun Sablok looked fresh as a daisy as he secured sixth spot off the back of a 16 per cent surge in Thinksmart. Unfortunately for Varun, in the shares race, timing is everything.