I've been 4th and 9th at this, both times on a very light 26" FS.
This year I'm using a burlier 29er FS with a dropper post, with the post mostly being for the last stage which is a mix of steep rocky stuff and a flat fireroad blast.
It's all rideable on a HT, Dave Henderson won it last year on a 29er HT by 1 point from the winner of the previous two years, Rhauri Watt, who was riding a burly setup Orange 5.
My main tip would be to get as near to the front as you can for the first descent
Get there, try and start the stage with a good gap in front you you. Last year I stopped for a toilet break at the top, but still caught some folk walking down the rockier sections near the bottom despite no-one passing me while I was stopped.
- Run tubeless, tough-sidewalled tyres.
- Jump the drainage ditches on the first descent, touching them could end your race early on.
- Cruise up the road climb after, only give it the beans once you get to the timed section further up.
Brilliant event, can't wait for it this year.