Originally Posted by real9999
I've been wondering why race skis are all going big up front. I came across this a while back.
Someone please tell me if I'm right...if they increased the width of the forebody while maintaining the same dimentions, they essentially take away from the curvature of the sidecut in front of the binding, and probably add curvature behind. This would probably be along the lines of widening the tail, right?
To answer the question about tip vs. tail bias, I have wondered the same thing.
In comparing the 2005 Rossi 9S WC (117-65-104) to the 2004 model (115-64-98), it felt like the newer ski was gripping and turning along the entire length of the ski, whereas the 2004 model feels like the grip is concentrated mainly underfoot. The newer model with a wider tail seemed to be more locked into the arc, with better grip and stability. I have heard similar comments about the Elan SLX Race (114-64-104), also a very wide-tailed ski, in terms of feeling grip along the entire edge.
So my bet would be that having a wider tail results in a smoother, better-held carve, whereas a narrow tail allows for easier skidding and line changes. Tip width affects ease of initiation, with wider being easier. However, a narrower tip can be overcome by having the binding centered more forward, which also allows the tail to disengage more easily when needed.