As for the SRAM red question, I know it might sound silly to build a CX in SRAM red, but I can explain my choices:
The (pre 2012) SRAM force lever have zeroloss only for the front derailleur; and I really really like the accuracy of the red on my previous road bike. Only offer in red (pre 2012). Now, the new force share the technology.
For the front derailleur, I wanted the new red with yaw technology, because[b] front shifting is so important [/b]and review says it’s a fantastic front derailleur.
The rear derailleur could have been force, but since I already have the shifters and fr derailleur; it was nice to get everything the same. I bought a used mini gruppo anyway…
As for the crank (S900), I get it for cheap; and it match the other SRAM component. I would have been interested in the FSA K-force light, but they usually sell for a lot more.
Well... yes and no. It really depends on the course. In races I rarely shift into the big ring. Cross races are like a circus and a 39x11 or 42x11 is plenty big for even the fastest paved sections. In short I wouldn't lose too much sleep over FD selection other than one that can hold up best banging into stuff