Check out this interview with Kenda-Felt pro and all around awesome guy Drew Edsall on MTBracenews.com. We highlighted our favorite part below, but be sure to visit it in its entirety here.
MTBRacenews.com: How do you choose between your hardtail and dual suspension bikes? Do you tend to prefer the hardtail for endurance racing?
Drew Edsall: I actually did race my dually a good amount last year. I got my win at Syllamos Revenge on my Edict Nine LTD and also raced that about half the time while at Transylvania Epic Stage Race last year. It’s a great bike!
Being on the team gives me a choice of the Felt Nine Hardtail and the Felt Edict Nine LTD. Both excellent bikes!
The decision of which bike to race normally comes down to three things:
1)Total amount of climbing (more climbing, more hardtail inclined): races at the Pro level are typically won on the climbs. Power to weight ratio is very important. That’s where you can make up or loose most of the time. So being as light as possible is super important, but you also have to be able to finish the race (see 2 and 3 for those answers).
2) Technical aspects on the climbs and flats (more full suspension inclined): If it’s flat or inclined, has lots of rocks and roots, and is going to require a lot of pedaling while seated, then I like the full suspension more. I don’t worry as much about the descents being technical or rocky. Most of the time I can get away with riding a hardtail downhill almost as fast as the dually on technical downhills. It’s the flats and technical/rocky terrain seen at courses like Syllamos Revenge and TSE that I feel a dually can really help at. You have to be able to keep pedaling on the flats and maintain your momentum on quick up and downs on the rocky, technical terrain. The Felt Edict Nine helps a lot with that and also is part of the reason I set a new record at Syllamos Revenge last year. I kept pedaling on the flats and throughout the rocky/technical terrain while minimizing fatigue.
3) How flat prone the course is: full suspensions are less likely to get flat tires due to the suspension. In the longer 100 milers and stage races, this can make a big difference. Syllamos Revenge is the perfect example of a flat prone, dually course in my opinion. I love my Felt Edict Nine there! You’ve got to be able to finish the race. In addition to that, a flat can make things a bit hectic and screw with your mind in the middle of a race. I prefer to avoid them with good bike choice, and of course, a solid tire choice also. Luckily Kenda has that covered with their new SCT tire versions as of last year.
here is a link to the whole interview: http://mtbracenews.com/news/drew-edsall-interview-kenda-felt-syllamos-revenge-nue-2013