IF THERE is a bunch sprint for victory in the Powercor Melbourne to Warrnambool Cycling Classic Steele Von Hoff knows his job is to hit top speed and claim the win.
But if the peloton splits and breakaways take control of the race then the InForm Make team rider knows exactly where he wants teammate and two-time winner Nathan Elliott - up the front contesting for a slice of history.
"It's a long race and I'm a sprinter and haven't really got that many kilometres in recent years since returning from Europe," the 32-year-old said.
"I haven't done that many kms this year but it's a huge race doing 267-kilometres and it's going to be a challenge as the longest race was (Australian Road Race) nationals which was 180.
"So you're talking an extra 100ks which is going to be challenging for myself but I am happy I have got Nathan Elliott in the team. He is a strong finisher and from the start he just keeps powering away."
Elliott has a chance to equal "Warrny" legends Peter "Bulldog" Besanko and David Allan as three-time winners of the classic.
Von Hoff, who is in his first season riding with InForm, is preparing to tackle his third Melbourne to Warrnambool.
His previous best performance was a fourth in 2011 and the introduction of the new Sunday criteruim at the Warrnambool breakwater has the 2018 Commonwealth Games road race champion licking his lips.
"It will suit me a little bit better being a sprinter," he said.
"Back in the day we used to have the Melbourne to Warrnambool and then the Shipwreck Coast (Cycling Classic) on the Sunday.
"It was always a fantastic weekend of racing to try and back it up the next day. It made a lot of the riders stronger for tours by backing up the two races.
"It's good for the strength in the legs to be able do it again."
The Mornington-based Von Hoff will ride in the elite men's class on both days of racing.
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