There are many niches within the road bike market, but none are more versatile than the humble cyclocross bike. Equipped with added mud clearance, wider and grippier tyres, and slacker geometry than a road bike, a cyclocross bike has the capability to ride a wider variety of surfaces and routes. Throw a set of slicks on and you have a speedy drop-bar training bike. Add mudguards and you’ve got a sharp and responsive commuter bike for darting about the city. Or fit some wider knobbly tyres, and take to your local singletrack for a bucketful of laughs. The Focus Mares AL is based on the carbon Mares frameset, but with alloy tubing, it comes in at a more attainable price point. This makes it ideal for riders who might be new to the world of drop handlebar bikes, and aren’t convinced by full-blown road racing bikes. Looking for something that will allow you to explore new riding experiences? Then a cyclocross bike like the Focus Mares gives you the ability to travel wherever you choose, both on road and off it.
Despite its lower price tag, the alloy Mares shares many features with its carbon sibling. It also uses internal headset bearings, with a tapered steerer tube that increase front-end stiffness and strength, even when you’re out of the saddle and hammering on the handlebars. There’s internal cable routing, and the Mares AL also uses 12mm thru-axles for the fork and the rear dropouts. This increases steering precision thanks to the stiffer junction with the wheel hubs, and it also ensures your disc rotors won’t rub on the brake pads. Speaking of, the disc brakes on the Mares AL offer improved stopping power over regular rim brakes, while also increasing predictability in wet weather conditions. And if you’re going to be punching the Mares AL around a muddy racecourse or along sopping wet inner city back streets, then those disc brakes will be very much appreciated.
The Mares AL range kicks off with a Shimano Tiagra model that comes with a 2x10 drivetrain, DT Swiss wheels and Shimano hydraulic disc brakes. Want to go lighter? The Mares AL 105 kicks the components up a notch, while moving to a 2x11 drivetrain.
Gear ratios46-36 CX
Frame buildAlloy Pro