In New Zealand’s high producing permanent pastures the topsoil constitutes a large reservoir of soil organic carbon (SOC), which shows a marked stratification with depth. As consequence, sub-surface layers can contain 10 times less carbon than the surface soil. In permanent pastures with high carbon inputs, the formation and decomposition of these surface SOC stocks are often at equilibrium and C storage shows little change over time. Pastoral based dairy systems utilising ryegrass plus clover cultivars require renewal every 7-10 years to avoid reversion to less productive grasses. This may involve spring cultivation (either no-till, shallow till or full cultivation), summer forage cropping and autumn re-grassing. It has been hypothesised that SOC stocks can be increased by inverting the soil profile at pasture renewal through infrequent (once in 25-30 years) deep mouldboard ploughing (up to 30 cm depth). Increased C sequestration occurs when the new grass quickly rebuilds SOC stocks in the new topsoil (exposed low C sub-soil) at a rate faster than the decomposition of SOC in the rich former topsoil transferred to depth (now below 15 cm). However, benefits form accelerated C storage may be offset if crop and pasture production is adversely affected by the ploughing event (e.g., as result of compaction or excessive drainage). Hence, the aim of this work was to assess the short-term effects of infrequent inversion tillage of long-term New Zealand pastoral-based dairy soils under summer crop management and autumn re-grassing. An imperfectly drained Typic Fragiaqualf under dairy grazing was deep ploughed (approx. 25 cm) and re-sown with turnip in October 2016; other treatments included were shallow (< 10 cm) cultivation and no-till. The site was core sampled (0-40 cm) before cultivation and after 5 months of turnip growth to assess changes in SOC. Plant growth, herbage quality, and nutrient leaching were monitored during the 5-month period; root growth was assessed at the end of the crop rotation. Full cultivation transferred SOC below 10 cm depth, as expected. Soil bulk density decreased whereas root mass increased (10-20 cm depth; P < 0.05) under deep cultivation only. Besides, losses of mineral N were attenuated under deep tillage, resulting in a relative increase in crop yield. The potential for infrequent inversion tillage increasing soil C sequestration as a greenhouse gas (GHG) mitigation tool is currently being tested at other sites in New Zealand.