From 2012 to 2014, technology in cyclocross bikes has changed quite a bit. From mechanical, hybrid and hydraulic disc brakes to many more electronic drivetrain and 11-speed options and wider rims, there are so many more component choices for consumers and pros alike. [See also: 2015 Focus Mares cyclocross bikes get major update, and are lighter, longer, and higher.]

Yet a quick look comparing Jeremy Powers’ two winning bikes from the 2012 and the 2014 Cyclocross National Championships shows that Powers changed very little in his bike of choice to win the Cyclocross National Championship.

We’ve profiled Powers’ bike quite a bit, including a disc brake version at the 2012 Cross Vegas, and earlier this season Powers relied on the SRAM RED 22 HydroR brakes and levers. But with the HydroR recall, and Powers’ upcoming stay in Europe, he found it convenient to switch back to a cantilever option of his Focus Mares carbon cyclocross bike.


Jeremy Powers' National Championship-Winning Focus Mares Carbon Cyclocross Bke - 2014 (top) and 2012 (bottom)

Jeremy Powers’ National Championship-Winning Focus Mares Carbon Cyclocross Bke – 2014 (top) and 2012 (bottom)

Why cantilever brakes for Europe? Most of us think of heavy mud and steep descents when thinking of European cyclocross races, but for Powers, it’s a question of maintenance and his wrenching skills. “I’m going to Europe, I’m going to have to be working on my own equipment for the next two weeks in February,” he told Cyclocross Magazine. “I just wanted to keep it simple. Run what I’m most capable of fixing when I break it!”

While keeping it simple may be the main motivation, we’ve also gotten wind of rumors about a Focus Mares revamp coming soon. Could Powers be on a new bike for Worlds? Stay tuned.

Powers has kept his Easton EC90 SL wheels, EA90 stem, and Crankbrothers Candy 11 pedals.

We counted a number of small changes between the 2012 bike (bottom) and the 2014 bike (top). Can you identify them all? Drop a comment below to test your bike geek skill and your eagle eyes. See full-sized image here.

For all the best Cyclocross Nationals 2014 coverage, including bike profiles, race reports, results and video interviews, check out our 2014 Cyclocross National Championship Page here.