SWINDON Robins team manager Alun Rossiter has confidence in club chairman Terry Russell to deliver a competitive racing surface while improving track conditions.

With the Robins’ SGB Premiership campaign due to start three weeks today, a proportion of fans have voiced concern that work to re-shape the Abbey Stadium track has been left too late.

But Rossiter said allowing that time for shale to bed in will prove key and necessary if the club is to avoid embarrassment similar to what Belle Vue Aces suffered when they opened their new stadium three years ago.

A capacity crowd turned out at the National Speedway Stadium in 2016 for the Peter Craven Memorial Meeting. But supporters were left disappointed when a star-studded field refused to race due to the condition of the racing surface.

At the Abbey, shale is expected to be laid down over the weekend before tyre-packing the surface will take up the majority of time between now and the Robins’ annual press and practice day.

Rossiter’s side will then host Belle Vue Aces on Thursday, April 11, to start their Premiership season.

“We’ve got the work started on the track and it was the Ben Fund meeting at the weekend, so it’s that time of the year when the season really starts to creep up on you,” said Rossiter.

“We’re confident it will all be done in time. It looks like we have got a bit of good weather now and once the chalk is in, we can do the shape and the banking of the first corner.

“Then the shale goes in and after that, it is a matter of making sure it is not stodgy. We don’t want to go through the situation that happened at Belle Vue – we don’t want to get everyone in and then find out we can’t ride.”

Chairman Terry Russell is leading work on the new track, which will also see the widths extended by one metre and the start-line pushed back fractionally.

Russell’s involvement in track preparation at the British Speedway GP inside Cardiff’s Principality Stadium gives Rossiter every faith that the job will be completed to the highest of standards.

“Terry has been involved in building tracks at Cardiff for quite a few years, so we know what we are doing,” said Rossiter.

“I think he is very confident that everything will be OK.

“It is going to make for better racing the overall condition of the track will be better too.

“With the old track, when it rained, you’d get spillage from the dogs track onto the speedway track. Now we will have some sort of drainage between the two so it should stay in better condition.”