Harry Tanfield has predicted a thrilling battle for gold in the Commonwealth Games road race.
However, he has warned cycling fans not to expect a bunch kick on the Currumbin beachfront in Queensland on Saturday morning.
The 168.3km course was billed by organisers as “sprinter friendly” but Tanfield is not convinced. Instead, he reckons a select group will scrap for glory.
The 23-year-old, who won time trial silver on Tuesday, will line up alongside Ian Bibby, Chris Latham, Tom Stewart, Ollie Wood and Adam Blythe at 3.30am.
Tanfield, from Great Ayton, rode the 18.7km circuit with his England team-mates on Thursday. He said:
“I think it will be a really reduced group who will sprint for the gold medal. It is a bergy course, with two good climbs.
“It is like a national championship course, so I’d expect a real small group to be away at the end.
“We have a strong team but it will be nails. We’ll just have to see how it is and where we are at the end.
“The Aussies have a very strong six. But I’m looking forward to it and it should be an exciting race.”
Cameron Meyer, who beat Tanfield to time trial gold, is joined by 2006 gold medallist Matt Hayman, Mitchell Docker, Steele von Hoff, Callum Scotson and Alex Edmondson in the Australian team
New Zealand will be hoping to land a blow with their six of Jack Bauer, Shane Archbold, James Oram, Hayden McCormick, Samuel Gaze and Jason Christie.
Luke Rowe leads a Welsh charge which includes Jon Mould, Dylan Kerfoot-Robson, Peter Kibble and Rhys Britton.
Of the other home nations, Scotland are represented by Mark Stewart, Grant Ferguson and Kyle Gordon.
Jake Kelly, Nathan Draper, Tom Mazzone, Leon Mazzone, Sam Brand and Matthew Bostock will line up on the grid for the Isle of Man, while Northern Ireland field Mark Downey, Marcus Christie, Xeno Young, Cameron Orr and Marc Potts.
Click here to check out the full start list. Welshman Geraint Thomas won gold in 2014, while the last Englishman to clinch victory was Paul Curran in 1986.