ALUN Rossiter is confident that Swindon Robins will have a ‘dark horse’ in their midst in the form of Justin Sedgmen when the 2016 Elite League campaign roars into action in late March.

Australian Sedgmen returns to the Blunsdon line-up for the first time since a two-year spell with the club as a raw teenager in 2010-11 - and Rossiter is convinced he has an ace in the pack to play when the racing starts.

Victorian Sedgmen, who turns 24 next month, has been the first to admit he struggled to make an impact during his previous Abbey Stadium stint, with his average hovering just above three.

But stepping back to Premier League level in the intervening years has seen him emerge as a new force.

A two-year spell with the Edinburgh Monarchs saw him help the Scottish club to back-to-back titles - a Premier League first - as well as Knockout Cup and League Cup wins.

He returns to Swindon with an average of just over four, but Rossiter reckons a more experienced Sedgmen is capable of riding to a much higher level.

“Justin probably struggled to settle when he first came to England, but it’s got to the stage where he has matured a lot,’’ said the Robins team boss.

“He’s ultra-professional and his equipment is excellent and he’s also really keen on his fitness.

“He’s learned a lot since he’s been away. He was only a young kid when he came to these shores before and I think he could push (his average) close to six.’’

Sedgmen gave an early glimpse of his skills in the Australian Championship earlier this month.

After falls in the opening two rounds - although he was placed third in the B final in the opener at Kurri Kurri - he climbed onto the podium with third in round three at Gillman before ending the series with a superb victory on his home circuit in Mildura.

Rossiter added: “I do think he could be a secret weapon and a bit of a dark horse this season.

“He was very unfortunate in the Australian Championship (earlier this month) because he won one of the rounds and did well in another.

“He’s no mug and with Jason Doyle at number one leading from the front, there is a bit of a buzz about the (Robins) team, especially with the fact that a lot of them are Aussies.’’ Sedgmen yesterday secured a ride in Poland’s Liga 1 after signing for for Latvian-based side Lokomotiv Daugavpils, joining the likes of former Grand Prix rider Freddie Lindgren and Jonas Kylmakorpi.

Sedgmen said: “I’ve had a few offers from Polish clubs, including some Ekstraliga clubs, but I felt I would be better served trying to build my experience in Liga 1.

“Make no mistake; this is an extremely tough league and this will test my abilities to the max.

“I need to force my way into the starting team but that won’t be easy as there is quality throughout the squad.

“Since we opened discussions with Daugavpils, I have been very impressed about the way they have conducted their business.

“It’s a very exciting move for me and my team and I can’t wait to get started.”