Tim Elverson has named his six-man squad for the Rutland-Melton International CiCLE Classic which takes place on Sunday (11am).
BIKE Channel Canyon’s sports director has unsurprisingly selected two riders who have previously stood side-by-side on the podium in Melton Mowbray.
Chris Opie and Harry Tanfield finished second and third as Steele von Hoff celebrated success in the 2015 edition of the race. The duo will return on Sunday.
With its mixture of wide roads and narrow sectors of treacherous farm tracks, the UCI 2.1 race presents riders with a unique test of their mettle.
And this season it is 10km longer at 189km, so it is no surprise to see Elverson putting his faith in proven performers on the unusual parcours.
Another man who has previously caught the eye in the race is Rory Townsend, who spent much of last season’s battle in a solo breakaway.
He will look to build on the fine form which has seen him finish fifth in the Tour of the Wolds and sixth in the Chorley Grand Prix in the past two weeks.
The squad also features former Team Raleigh and Team Wiggins rider Sam Lowe, who was 14th in the junior Paris-Roubaix in 2012.
Lowe also finished the espoirs version of the Hell of the North last season, underlining his ability to handle different terrain.
Elverson has selected former Great Britain junior cyclocross rider Jake Womersley in his team, too, as he aims to utilise the Yorkshireman’s bike-handling skills and ability on all terrain.
The line-up is completed by Matt Nowell, who is set to make his debut in the race. The first-year professional was 16th in the Chorley Grand Prix last weekend.
We will bring you more previews to the race in our news section over the coming days. In the meantime, click here to find out more about the Rutland-Melton International CiCLE Classic.