SWINDON ROBINS: Morris transfer hinges on Batchelor loan deal
SWINDON Robins still intend to complete the purchase of young Australian Nick Morris from Glasgow, but not until the ongoing situation regarding Troy Batchelor is resolved.
The Elite League champions agreed a deal to sign the teenager full-time in November and named him in their 2013 side, having budgeted to sign one rider on a permanent transfer during the winter.
Former Glasgow owner Alan Dick claimed in Thursday’s Speedway Star the payment for Morris was due in December, but Swindon co-owner Gary Patchett has insisted the Scottish club knew all along the date of payment depended on the Blunsdon side resolving Batchelor’s future.
The Robins have been locked in a battle with Peterborough throughout the off-season regarding the future of Batchelor, with the Panthers insisting he could only return to the Abbey Stadium on a full transfer.
Swindon hope to be able to sign the new Australian champion on loan again after March 1, at which point Patchett insists the payment for Morris will be made.
“There is no intention on our part to renege on our agreement to buy Nick Morris, but Alan Dick has been aware since before Christmas that the outstanding issue regarding Troy Batchelor has a bearing on the transfer,” he said.
“Until the Batchelor situation is resolved we will not be in a position to complete the transfer, although we do expect to be in a position to do that in the coming week.
“Notwithstanding that fact, no transfer can be complete until the necessary paperwork is in place, and I am yet to see a transfer document signed by the former Glasgow promotion, not that I expect it would not have been forthcoming.
“You would have thought anyone in a hurry to sell a rider would ensure that all the Is were dotted and Ts crossed, but they aren’t.”
Meanwhile, the latest rider to be announced for the season-opening Bob Kilby Memorial Meeting on March 14 is Rory Schlein.
The Australian won the Elite League Riders’ Championship at Blunsdon in 2011, and Patchett believes he will be in the mix to win the Kilby meeting.
“Rory always rides around Blunsdon well, and never fails to disappoint, and I am sure he will be challenging to win the meeting,” he said.
“He could have ridden for Swindon last season, but opted to go to Belle Vue instead.”
Meanwhile, Swindon have experienced technical difficulties with the production of credit card-style season tickets.
However, Patchett has moved to assure fans that they will receive their passes in good time for the start of the campaign.
He said: "Naturally we've had a few enquiries from season ticket holders, but the club can assure them their tickets will be sent soon.”