My wife, who quite rightly gets bored of spending weekends just watching me race DH and gravity enduro has decided she would like to do some competitive cycling herself. She's a proficient mountain biker, reasonably fit but has never competed in any form of cycling event. After having some time to consider what she'd like to do she has decided that CX pretty much ticks all of the boxes for what she wants out of the competitive element of cycling. I'm likewise keen to get involved and support where I can.
Neither of us know a great deal about the sport so I said I would do some research and field some opinions from those that do it. So, with that in mind, can fellow CXers offer some info on what to expect from a typical CX race? What she should be aiming towards in terms of fitness and also what bike for budget of a £1000 would be suitable? (Is that budget enough?) and generally what we will need to get through a weekend of racing?