Lucinda Brand Wins Dutch National Cyclocross Championships!
Lucinda Brand of Team Sunweb literally rode away from the competition on Saturday’s Dutch National Cyclocross Championships in Surhuisterveen, the Netherlands. Only sitting second for a brief period at the start of the race, Brand made her move and never looked back, winning the title by nearly a minute.
The National Championship course was extremely challenging with multiple stair sections, a sand pit and thick mud to contend with. Though Brand felt at home on the fast road and dry grass sections, the deep mud required consistent power output that was a challenge for all riders. Even after sliding into the tape in the slick, muddy conditions on the first lap, Brand had already established enough of a lead to hold her position at the front comfortably.
Due to the conditions, Brand and other riders made the decision to stop through the pits for a clean bike multiple times to ensure tires, drivetrain and pedals remained clear and working. As she passed through for a clean bike on the final lap, Brand pumped her fist in early celebration. With nearly a minute lead, she cruised confidently to victory.
“I had expected a little bit more of a battle but I had a really good feeling from the start,” said Brand. “I could directly take a gap and keep going to make it a little bit bigger throughout the race which gave me a lot of confidence that I could bring the title home. I’m super happy with the win and I’m looking forward to enjoying the victory.”
Brand is now a multi-discipline National Champion, winning road national championships in 2013 and 2015. The win was especially sweet after a second place finish to former teammate Marianne Vos at last year’s National Cyclocross Championship race. She will surely be looking for redemption at this year’s World Championships as well, after a narrowly missing the 2017 podium in Bieles, Luxembourg. The 2018 World Championships will take place in Valkenburg-Limburg, the Netherlands on February 3 and 4.
Saturday, 13 January 2018