Caley Thistle boss John Robertson insists the two Dundee clubs will not have it all their own way in the Championship promotion race.
Dundee and Dundee United are expected to be favourites to go up but Robertson, pictured below, is in charge of one of the many clubs that also hold similar aspirations.
The Caley Jags went down 1-0 to Dundee in their final Betfred Cup game on Sunday and United halted their push for the Premiership in the play-offs at the end of last season.
James McPake has taken the reins full-time at Dundee while United have invested in signings like Lawrence Shankland and Adam King to help end their four-season stay in the Championship.
But Robertson pointed to the improvements made across the board from other challengers, including Inverness, and believes they will have a big say come the end of the season.
Robertson said: “You’d expect both Dundee clubs, with the money they have already spent, to be up there. I’m sure James will beef up the ranks as well. I’d imagine they’d bring another three or four in.
“The two Dundee clubs, given their backing and support, will be tough to beat.
“Partick have spent a lot this year. All the teams have strengthened; Dunfermline, Morton, Queen of the South, Ayr.
“Everybody seems to be strengthening their side and it’s going to be another hugely competitive league. We’re happy with our squad. We may look to make another addition.
“It’ll be really tight because while on paper you’d expect the two Dundee sides to be favourites, ourselves, Dunfermline, Morton, Queen of the South and Partick Thistle will have a lot to say about that as well.”
Performances against the top two last season – United and champions Ross County – cost them ground at the top, with Inverness taking four points from a possible 24 against the top two.
Their only victories over both came in the Scottish Cup, with a penalty shootout win over County then a 2-1 win at Tannadice to earn a semi-final berth.
He added: “We took two from 12 against United and County. Flip that around and we win the league.
“So we know what’s required. We’ll have to be better than we were on Sunday.”