Eight World Championship images from the lens of photograper Victor Lucas

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Saladini leads. World Cup 4X, Maribor, Slovenia

Brendan Fairclough gets clearance for landing at Canberra airport. There were reports of UFOs turning up on the local radar when old Brendog was whipping it up over the pointy boulders of the 'triple treat'

with a ton of air to spare.

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Saladini leads. World Cup 4X, Maribor, Slovenia

Brian Lopes looks smooth and stylish with his trademark perfect timing through the jumps, woops and berms. And there's no doubt he has the horsepower to pull together a fast lower section. But perhaps he is not so comfortable on the loose and gnarly rock sections, especially on a short travel bike.

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Saladini leads. World Cup 4X, Maribor, Slovenia

Fabien Barel is sticking with his short travel bike, even though he has had a couple of sketchy moments. There's not much room for error flying flat out through boulders with only 160mm up front to soak up the impacts. But he is as focused and determined as ever.

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Saladini leads. World Cup 4X, Maribor, Slovenia

Steve Peat says it feels like he's done a hundred and twenty five interviews already this week, and sooner or later people ask the same questions - how long are you going to keep going? how many times have you been 2nd? will this be your year to win the worlds? here's Warner having a go, but Peaty aint easily rattled and we'll just have to wait till tomorrow afternoon for the answers to some of these questions...

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Saladini leads. World Cup 4X, Maribor, Slovenia

Mick Hannah seems to be adding a new piece of yellow equipment each day. Yellow and green for the Ozzie National colours. Perhaps its like the local wildlife - generally the more brightly coloured they are, the more dangerous they are.

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Saladini leads. World Cup 4X, Maribor, Slovenia

We don't need no stinkin' bikes. The local kids took over the skate ramp. They had no bikes but who cares, they busted out some sick moves anyway.

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Saladini leads. World Cup 4X, Maribor, Slovenia

Duncan Riffle was drafted in as a UCI-ACU timekeeping delegate for the Boxxer Worlds. He was in charge of the red-tape, so any opportunity for a delay was used to its fullest and that the contestants finished their drinks before lubricating their lower legs.

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Saladini leads. World Cup 4X, Maribor, Slovenia

The Canberra pits are awash with custom built and modified bikes, all tuned specially for this race. There was much speculation as to the purpose of this particular prototype from an unknown Ozzie frame builder

- The extra high BB gives a clue that its aimed at the freeride movement or 'southern hemi-shore' while the obvious use of a large hot-air canister could mean it's a new short travel zero-bob no-dive full-marketing suspension system. The brakes appear to be some new 'disc-free' design and the drivetrain appears to be completely hidden within the frame. The riders single-sided pedalling technique remains a mystery.

Photographer Victor Lucas captures the drama at the 2009 World Championships in Australia