Once again, Brand powered her way into the lead group off of the start. Shooting for the top step of the podium, Brand unleashed two strong attacks on lap two and three. Unfortunately, current World Champion Sanne Cant met both attacks with vigor and kept pushing when Brand’s energy waned on the third lap. The Sunweb rider kept her sight on Cant, but was forced to dismount before the flyover in muddy conditions that seemed to worsen with every lap. With just enough power left in the tank, Brand sprinted ahead of Katie Compton to seal the deal on the runner up position.
Thursday’s race in Loenhout, Belgium was Brand’s last time at the start line in 2017, ending the year with a solid finish.
“After many years starting in Loenhout, I finally made it to the podium,” Brand wrote in an Instagram post Thursday after the race.