Equipment stolen from club

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Geoff VivianGeraldton Guardian
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Thousands of dollars worth of equipment used to coach junior athletes from All-Schools Championships to nationals level was stolen from the Geraldton Little Athletics Club last week.

Specialist coach Jacko Whitby, who personally owned the lost equipment, said it took a while to realise the extent and value of the lost items.

“I originally didn’t worry too much about it because I thought it was only a couple of hundred dollars worth, I thought ‘yeah I can afford to buy that’,” Mr Whitby said.

“But after going back and looking at it, I’m sort of panicking a little bit now.”

He said the stolen gear was specialist training equipment for sprinters and high jumpers.

It included resistor cords, straps, ankle weights, sit-up benches, kettle bells and various other items.

“It has taken me decades to get it to where it is, buying equipment whenever I could afford it and adding to the supply just for the benefit of the athletes,” he said.

“And it’s been working very well, all this specialist training equipment.

“I’ve got two All-Schools Championship winners that are going to the nationals.”

Mr Whitby said the extra training he was able to give one junior athlete helped them earn a gold medal.

“It’s very frustrating to lose this equipment and try and replace it in one hit which, unfortunately, is not going to happen, not unless I win Lotto overnight or something,” he said.

Mr Whitby said he hoped anyone who now had the equipment would return it on a no-questions-asked basis.

“If they just put it on the veranda or give me an anonymous phone call and say they will drop it off at such and such a time, I’ll make sure that I’m here,” he said.

Mr Whitby said he had initially turned down offers of cash donation, but regretted this once he realised the extent of the loss and was now happy to accept money to buy new equipment.

To help, contact Mr Whitby on 0427 776 742 or email jackowhitby @westnet.com.au.

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