What is Cyclocross?
The ideal cyclocross race bike is a road/mountain bike cross-polination: lightweight aluminum, carbon, steel or titanium frame; carbon fork; drop bars (for leverage on climbs, and for sprinting); integrated shifters/brake levers; 700c x 30-38c (1.2-1.5in) knobby tyres; mountain bike clipless pedals; and a double or single chainring (smaller than on a road bike) with guard. Mud clearance is a big issue; the fork and rear stays need room for mud to build up on the tyres without clogging.
Frames and forks are tougher than on standard road bikes, top tubes are shorter and bottom brackets are often slightly higher. Disc brakes are now allowed for cyclocross racing, potentially giving powerful all-weather braking. Many racers still use linear-pull (V) brakes or cantilevers, which give plenty of power when set up right. Top-bar brake levers are often added for better control.
Many cyclocross bikes play to their utility potential, with mudguard and rack mounts for commuting/weekend exploring work. There’s also a growing number of crossover-style bikes, which trade race weight and jarring rigidity for a heavier and more forgiving chassis, often in smooth-riding steel.
Why Cyclocross Bike?
If you are after versatility in a no-nonsense, traditional package. Cyclocross bikes will take a pounding, and can serve as a commuter workhorse, an off-road explorer, or a grizzled racer – with little more than a change of tyres. With a position broadly like that of a road bike, a cyclocross bike will be swift and efficient on the tarmac. However, turn it loose off-road and with its greater stability and grippier tyres – and its slightly lower gearing – it will surprise you how it can handle mud and tricky climbs.
Difference between Cyclocross and Hybrid
A hybrid is generally means a road bike with flat handlebars. They have slightly more upright geometry and clearance for bigger road tyres and mudguards. Hybrid is a good commuting solution. Compare to cyclocross, hybrid is not meant for off-road use although they could. The most identical difference between hybrid and cyclocross is cyclocross has a drop handlebars.
Difference between Cyclocross and Road Bike
The major differences between the two are the frame geometry, and the wider clearances that cyclo-cross bikes have for their larger tires and mud and other debris that they accumulate.