|Fuji Altamira CROSS 1.5 DISC Cyclocross Bike|
Cyclocross is a very specific type of bike racing. For the most part, the course is off-road but there are sometimes portions of pavement included in the course. You can expect to encounter grass, dirt, mud, gravel, sand, and a whole slew of other assortments and combinations. The races are based on a set time (measured by numbers of laps), not distance. Depending on your category, a race can be as quick as 30 minutes (for beginners), or as long as 60 minutes (for pros).
It is only starting to gain popularity in America, but it is very popular in France, Holland and especially in Belgium. The cyclocross season is during the winter, when there isn't much road racing going on. The 1910 winner of the Tour de France stated that his off-season cyclocross racing was key to his TDF victory. This greatly improved the sport's popularity.
Here's a video that describes the sport. If you are interested in finding out more about cyclocross racing in the United States, please visit the USA Cycling website. If you decide you want to get into cyclocross racing, Circle City Bicycles can help. We are a Fuji Bicycles dealer, and they currently offers 5 different cyclocross bikes.