Like those weird winged ants that emerge just before a rain storm, the Cairns locals came out of the rainforest in their barefooted masses today to go completely bananas on muddy hillside. It clearly takes more than a bit of trench foot to keep these frothing fans away.
The conditions were tough on riders too; when the rain stopped, the mud quickly turned to cookie dough, gumming up bikes and making carrying speed a real challenge.
The results today (men and women) were surprising, with a lot highly decorated riders right down the pile. But if the conditions are the same again tomorrow, finals could be just as much of a lottery; roll the dice, let brakes off and hope like hell a root doesn’t steal your front wheel from under you.
Here are a few more of our favourites from today’s action.