I just purchased a Novara Randonee thinking that this could be used as a cyclocross bike, and now I was told that this is a touring bike, and cant be used for cyclocross. Does anyone have an opinion on if this bike can be changed around to be used for CX, or am I stuck with a touring bike?
You can BS it, I did for a little bit, but the geometry and gearing will get annoying after a while-you know you can return anything to REI at any time right? The 06 Elements should be out shortly (they're 'low end' cross bike) and costs the same, or if you're interested you could buy mine...
I raced last season somewhat successfully on a Bridgestone RBT. Put some cross tires on your Randonee and it becomes a CX bike. Sure some bikes are gonna be better, but it's a whole lot more about the rider than the bike anyway.
I raced 3 years sucessfully on an old touring bike. As long as the tires can fit in the chain/seat stays and the brakes reach you can race any bike. If you have cantilever/ center pull brakes even better.