Don't know if it's so smart to start playing ATP-tournament right away.
We have numerous examples of guys that had great year on challengers, but failed the next year on ATP.
I think he should mix it up and hope he will.
There's a German interview with Stebe where he said sth about his scheduling:
"[...]Ich werde dabei etwas mehr als zwei Drittel der Turniere auf der ATP-Tour spielen, den Rest Challenger."
"I'll play a bit more than two thirds of the tournament on the ATP tour, the rest being Challengers."
I only think he should have played Chennai in this week as the Brisbane field is way better. I mean, there are only two challengers that week, Sao Paulo is for the SA guys and Noumea isn't the place every of the Challenger guys wanna go. I'm sure in February he'll go back to some challengers (or play SA clay swing).