If I remember correctly didn't Fev apply in the last cycle of applications, so that when the time came this time they would be better informed of the criteria they needed to be achieving. It strikes me that they are moving things along very nicely at Fev with probably the main sticking points being ground development and potential crowds. The first is the same all the Calder clubs seem to be facing, and the second stems from the fact that Fev as a town really is pretty small with 2 other Pro RL clubs nearby.
In answer to Parky's point it's never appeared that they have anyone to bankroll them, but because of that it's taken a long time to get the on field things right which they've now done and it will take a long time to get the ground sorted, let alone be successful in SL. Perhaps though their primary aim is maybe to be able to displace one of Cas or Wakey (who are both similar in not having a big backer) or maybe both in this or the subsequent round of applications, and worry about the success bit after that?
I get the feeling that in SL now you either need to have a rich backer (Warrington (although I know they made a profit this year) Wigan of old, Hudds, HKR,) or be based in a large city where attendances and income from corporate sponsorship provide adequate revenue (Leeds, Hull). Not sure how Saints get all their money
This is where the middle ground teams struggle as they are based in areas too small to generate large crowd income and the local companies that provide sponsorship opportunities are not "big" enough to pay big bucks. I also see this as being why the RFL's overall plan is that RL is less about the M62 Corridor and more about expansion in to bigger cities and markets, as thats where the money will be to keep the game going.
Anway, well done Fev and if they can somehow get the ends of the stadium developed Cas and Wakey should be very worried.
To say Fev are a small club is a bit of a myth to be honest, for sure the town is small but people outside dont realise the club pulls in passionate support from the towns Pontefract and knottingley as well as all the surrounding villages, this is why the club have the unique world record of having many crowds above the population. rovers arnt a small club and with a bit of success and a pro-active board the crowds will increase. As for the ground, well plans are well on the way the ground will be improved and capacity increased over the next few seasons, there is also plans to utilise the 18 acres of land the club owns. Rovers could be a very wealthy club with a decent fan base and a tidy modern ground that meets requirements in a few years and as for backers the club as a couple of backers mark Cambell and Andy Mcneil, watch out because Rovers the small village that as took on and beaten the giants of the game in years gone by are ready to do it again