A deal has been concluded with Terry Russell to take the Swindon Robins into the Elite League in the 2004 season. Russell is quick to point out that it will be very much a case of Swindon business as usual, as the intention is to continue the operation with the already highly successful local staff.

In particular, he considers commercial manager Dave Prowse to be a key player in the way forward, as the profile of the club will be raised by live television exposure and all of the added commercial interest and support which is sure to follow.

Elite League racing will mean that the cream of the world's riders will be seen in action at the Abbey Stadium in 2004. The likes of World No.4 Leigh Adams, himself a Swindon asset, will be seen alongside others like former Robin Jason Crump and current World Champion Nicki Pedersen to name but a few.

The ultra-professional Leigh Adams held his highly successful Testimonial meeting at Blunsdon on 31 July this year, which attracted a huge crowd, easily the biggest of the season. This indicated that Swindon fans have an appetite for the Elite League level of racing, and of course the stadium facilities are well up to the standard required for the higher sphere of racing.

Managing Director Dominic Threlfall of main team sponsors Pebley Beach Suzuki said of the changes: 'We remain firmly behind the club and are very excited by the move into the higher league. The prospects, with television coverage now included, are awesome and we'll be doing all we can to help the Pebley Beach Robins in their quest to be the best. We think it's great news for us as a major sponsor and for all the fans.'

Swindon will continue to run a Conference League side as part of their youth policy and will be team sponsored by Artdeans Motorcycles as announced at last weekend's end-of-season Dinner and Dance. The Conference team will be known as Team Artdeans Swindon Sprockets.

Dave Prowse stated: 'I am greatly encouraged by the level of commercial support we have at Swindon. In Pebley Beach and Artdeans, we have two companies who really mean business and do give us tremendous help, and of course there are so many others too, who are deeply committed to this club. We are indebted to them all and I am now delighted to be heavily involved in the planned move up to Elite level. I am sure that we have a great future as a club, along with our many corporate supporters, and as Terry has said it's very much a case of business as usual.'

Season tickets and admission prices will be announced shortly, after the Promoters' AGM, following ratification of entry into the Elite League. Russell is keen to point out that the new deal in no way affects his business position at Eastbourne Speedway, where he has a close working relationship as co-promoter at the venue with Jon Cook.



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