TL;DR: used SiS Go and HS gels last season, have moved away from SiS this season for various reasons; now actually moving away from HS too. Didn’t notice a performance difference based in the sugar source personally.
I actually raced my 70.3s last season using both Honey Stinger gels and SiS. I do not like HS Gold gel, and prefer the Acai flavor. I like that gel better than any of the uncaff SiS gels.
But mostly I used SiS on the bike, and then HS on the run in my training and A race. The only reason behind that was I found the HS gels easier to carry. By the time the run came around, I didn’t want any more caffeine.
I really liked the SiS gels in gel flasks. Being isotonic, they worked really well in the flasks, but my Hammer flasks only hold three SiS gels each. That worked fine for the 2.5ish hr ride. Plenty of calories there for me at that intensity. I alternated caff w/ non-caff SiS gels on my rides, then straight HS Acai gel on the run.
I like that I can buy the HS gel in bulk. That said, I just switched back to Hammer Gel bulk, just because I like some of their flavors and it’s a little bit less expensive. I haven’t noted any difference in the sugar sources based on performance, personally. I’m not using SiS gels at all right now. I’m preferring liquid calories anyway (Skratch/Tailwind) .
I do love HS waffles, but haven’t had much use for them since my rides are generally 2hrs. With a century coming up late summer, I might carry a couple just to change things up. I’ll have to check out the TJs stroopwaffles.