In a biological snake, the sidewinding mode of locomotion is used both to optimize movement over soft substrates (like sand), and to minimize contact with the hot ground. To get a good sidewinding motion, the way your snake is jointed will have to force it to “lift” the forward-moving portions as they are pushed forward. Sidewinders I’ve watched typically touch the ground only at 2 zones (the least possible contact). The snake doesn’t need to “tripod” for stability, as the contact zones are curves, not single points. The parts of the snake touching the ground varies in a wave as the snake moves along, so that no single part of the snake stays in contact with the ground for too long at a time.