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Differences between a country cross bicycle and a marathon bicycle

Differences between a country cross bicycle and a marathon bicycle

The current Mountain Bike consists of several Modalities, many of them recently. Two of them are Cross Country (or XC) and Cross Country Marathon (XCM). Each of them has its peculiarities and also a specific type of bicycle. Although sometimes, and if you are not very expert, identifying models, they can be confused. Knowing how to differentiate between the two modalities and their bicycles can help you refine more in the choice of your next mountain bike, depending on which biker profiles, type of routes you make or driving style. In this post we want to clarify the most frequent doubts about these two specialties of Mountain Bike, their tours and competitions, in addition to giving you some tricks to know how to distinguish between a bicycle of pure XC and another marathon.

What is Cross Country (XC)

Cyclist doing a horse Is called Cross country (or field through) to the most classical and conventional modality of mountain cycling. That is, the original Mountain Bike, with mixed routes through the mountain or the field that combine flat paths, with stretches of obstacles, climbs and descents. In Cross Country the technical component is low and obstacles must be affordable, so the speed, agility and physical form of the cyclist before the ability or good bicycle handling. The professional competition associated with this modality is the Olympic Cross Cross (XCO). Olympic because it is the only MTB discipline that is Olympic sport. It is done on a closed circuit, with lows and sectors with obstacles, to which runners must give a certain number of turns. They are short -lived races (no more than an hour and a half), but fast and explosive at the same time.

How is a Cross Country bicycle

The CROSS Country Current Bicycles They have a conventional or classic painting design, with compact measures, steering angles (69 - 72º) and the armchair (72 - 74º) closed and vertical tube. Materials and assembly must be light and simple to use. In Cross Country you must roll quickly and adapt perfectly to rhythm changes. That is why the bike must weigh little and be very manageable and reactive in curves and accelerations. On the other hand, the bicycle can have front, front and rear suspension (double suspension), or be completely rigid. The latter are no longer used in XCO competitions but are still very valid for paths with hardly any technical sections or obstacles. The suspension route is short, from 80 mm to 100 mm. The marathon is a submodality born from the Cross Country, in which the routes are also mixed like those of the pure XC, but the distance is much longer. If the Cross country is identified with the Mountain Bike circuits classic, short and fast, the marathon does so with long -distance paths or out -of -time circuit tours of several hours. Or several days tests in stages.

What is the Marathon (XCM)

Cannondale mountain bike The marathon does not have competition at the Olympic Games such as XCO, but with careers in the UCI calendar and a world championship. Likewise, any test by stages of the Mountain Bike such as the CAPE Epic, the Swiss Epic, or the Andalusia Bike Race, are also framed within this discipline, which is identified with the acronym XCM.

How is a marathon bike

XC Marathon bicycles are very similar to those of conventional XC, although they have a series of elements that differentiate them from them and that facilitate their identification. These are the most common:

Relaxed design and geometry

We say relaxed in the sense that comfort prevails above characteristics such as agility, speed of reactions or a corridor attack posture. Marathon bicycles are usually longer between axes. Its angles and measures favor a more upright and therefore more comfortable cyclist posture, since it will be pedal for longer than in the XC.

Major suspension route

In general, although there are 100 mm marathon bicycles the suspension route is longer, from 110 mm to 120 mm. This enhances qualities such as comfort, obstacle absorption and adaptation to different types of land.

Specific components

Wide tires are usually mounted, 2.20 "or 2.30" that provide greater comfort, absorption of irregularities and are more durable than those of 2 "and 2.10" typical of the XC tests. As for the developments, a few years ago marathon bicycles used to be the last double plate. However, the recent explosion of high -ranking monoplat transmissions (1x11 and 1x12), the marathon biker can already have a wide range of relationships by riding a single dish. Other components that many bikers change to adapt their bicycle to the marathon are the fists. Those of silicone and curved or ergonomic form are the most comfortable and Avoid numbness of hands. There are also specific armchairs for XCM with a larger padded and contact surface. On the other hand, a marathon bike has to have two portabidones, allowing an extra water driver for long bike days.

Cross Country vs Marathon, what bicycle to choose?

MTB jump Taking into account these differences between an XC and one XCM bicycle it will be easier to opt for a model or another when buying bike or renewing what you already have. If you do not know if you are a pure cous country biker or the marathon is better, think what kind of routes you do, if shorter but intense or longer and longer. In the first case, yours is the most classic XC and in the second, without a doubt, the marathon. You also have to know your body and limits. If you do not have too much background or resistance, perhaps opt for a conventional XC is the best option. On the other hand, if you endure without problem three or four hours of bicycle without rest and you like to make high uneven routes or participate in tests in stages you must have a marathon bicycle, with a greater suspension and assembly route adapted to support long cycling days .

Recommended Cross Country Bicycle Models

  • BMC Fourstroke
  • Orbea Alma
  • Trek Supercaliber
  • Specialized Epic
  • Scott Scale
  • Canyon Exceed
  • Mondraker Podium
  • Cannondale Scalpel
  • MMR Rakish
  • BH Lynx Race

Recommended Marathon Bicycles Models

  • Orbea Oiz
  • Scott Spark
  • Bianchi Methanol
  • Canyon Lux
  • KTM Scarp
  • Santa Cruz Blur
  • Cube Stereo
  • Lapierre Zesty
  • Trek Top Fuel
  • Merida One Twenty
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