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Lucinda Brand’s 2020-2021 dominance culminates in cyclocross Grand Slam

Dutch rider takes World Cup, world championship, Superprestige and X2O Trofee

Ceylin Del Carmen Alvarado took Sunday’s final round of the X2O Badkamers Trofee on a snowy, windy course at the University of Brussels. She won the last five rounds, but she will rue her misfortune on Round 3, when a piece of wire got wrapped in her drivetrain and made her finish four minutes behind the winner. Series leader Lucinda Brand survived a huge equipment-failure scare in the final lap to cling to the top of the table by five seconds and earn the 2020-2021 Grand Slam: the World Cup, the World Championship, the Superprestige series and the X2O Badkamers Trofee.

Winner of the final five rounds, Alvarado’s disastrous third round scuttled her chances of taking the X2O Trofee.

Coming into the final round Brand led Denise Betsema by 41-seconds, having padded her lead by a handful of seconds in the penultimate round. Alvarado was third but 4:40 back.

Brit Anna Kay took an early lead of Lap 1 with Betsema second and Alvarado third. Brand closed the gap a little before the line, where Betsema took five bonus seconds.

Alvarado grabbed the reins from Kay on Lap 2. Alvarado then dashed away, with Kay, Betsema and Round 1 winner Annemarie Worst her closest pursuers. Brand later joined the chase group and went to the front before U23 world champion Fem vam Empel and Manon Bakker made the junction.

Alvarado leads Kay, Betsema and Annemarie Worst on Lap 2.

At the end of the third of five circuits Alvarado led Betsema by 20 seconds and Brand and Bakker by 25 seconds.

Alvarado reaches the planks on Lap 3.

The penultimate lap saw Bakker momentarily shed Brand before the world champion turned the tables. When Betsema heard the bell, she was 11-seconds clear of Brand, with Alvarado 16-seconds ahead.

Brand clawed Betsema closer on the bell lap, but in the final third of the circuit Betsema pushed away again and Bakker dropped the world champ. Brand, who seemed furious with her pedals and cleats as she crossed the line, ended up finishing 31 seconds behind Betsema in fifth place, having been passed by van Empel. It was Alvarado’s third consecutive University of Brussels win in the X2O Trofee.

2020-2021 X2O Badkamers Trofee, Round 8, Brussels
1) Ceylin Del Carmen Alvarado (The Netherlands/Alpecin-Fenix) 40:46
2) Denise Betsema (The Netherlands/Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal) +0:06
3) Manon Bakker (The Netherlands/Credishop-Fristads) +0:20