My take, ask yourself where you spend most of your time positioned on the bike and bars, as well as the most widely used effort relative to that position.
I consider this a type of 80/20 thing, where I want the default that you land on for most riding to be your “home” position, at your typical power output.
As such, I most often aim to get a rider with comfortable hold around the hoods, having the inner web of the hand (between the thumb and fore finger) resting very near or against the back curve of the hood, while doing their Tempo to Threshold effort for racer types, and Endurance for more casual riders.
I recommend this specific position (regular wrapped hand right on the hoods) as the 80% spot because you have the most control on the handlebars, ability to shift and break without moving your hands. Having to move from a gapped position as the 80% home position just seems less than ideal IMO.
When it comes to the “power” or “relaxed” positions as part of the 20% use, I want to make sure they are accommodated. But they are secondary to the most often used power and positions. Most often these seem to work as a result of arm reach (via elbow bend) and/or back angle changes from the 80% position.
As to adjusting your setup, with a short steer tube:
- Assuming you are already as high as you can go with with stem spacers under a negative angle stem (6-8*?), and if you think the flipped stem version is too tall, you need a stem with less angle.
- If you have something with more angle than 6-8*, you can just pick a step down from there.
- If you have a 6-8*, you might be able to use a Specialized 4D stem with their inner angle shim to get something in between yours simple flipped.
- One trick to consider, is to simply rotate the bar angle up a bit, with the same stem setup. This does two things. It actually raises the contact points a small amount, which may be what you want. It also changes the potential wrist angle to the forearm. I end up using flat to 5* positive bar angle (as viewed from the side of a level bike) for many riders. The angle is usually higher as the saddle to bar drop decreases. But just tweak from feel to see if you like it and how much is “best”.