POLICE RECOVER SAFARI CHAMPION'S JACKAROO TUESDAY, APRIL 25: New South Wales Police have recovered the $100,000 Holden Jackaroo stolen from dual Australian Safari champion Bruce Garland outside his race team's workshop in Sydney seven days ...
POLICE RECOVER SAFARI CHAMPION'S JACKAROO
TUESDAY, APRIL 25: New South Wales Police have recovered the $100,000 Holden Jackaroo stolen from dual Australian Safari champion Bruce Garland outside his race team's workshop in Sydney seven days ago.
The 41-year-old endurance driver took delivery of the four-wheel-drive Jackaroo today from Bass Hill Police Station and said he would be able to repair damage to the vehicle and race it in this year's 5,000km international cross-country rally from Alice Springs to Darwin from August 20-27.
Garland, Safari champion in 1996 and 1999, said about $25,000 worth of equipment had been stripped from the Jackaroo, including seats, harnesses, radio and navigation instruments, spare wheels and tyres, and some suspension parts.
He said the 3.5-litre V6-powered Jackaroo had been recovered from a street in the Sydney suburb of Bankstown after a thorough search by NSW Police.
Garland, who won the Condobolin 750 event in central NSW on Saturday and Sunday in another Jackaroo, said his team now faced a hectic schedule repairing the vehicle, and replacing the missing equipment, before the Finke Desert Race in the Northern Territory from June 10-12 and the Safari.
"I've got to say the (NSW) Police did a mighty job finding the stolen Jackaroo so quickly," said Garland.
"If it hadn't been recovered for a few weeks then we would have been in real strife preparing it properly for the races later in the year."
"As it is we're still going to have to work flat-out to have the vehicle ready for the Finke (Desert Race), which is an important build-up to the Safari."
"As yet we don't know who took the vehicle from outside my workshop, but my guess is it was joyriders."
Garland said his outright victory in the Condobolin event had boosted his team's morale after the distractions caused by the theft of the Jackaroo.
"When something like that happens just beofre a big race it's tough for everyone, but my team did a fantastic job and it was satisfying to end such a difficult week by winning at Condobolin," he said.
Ken Harris from Orange finished second in the Condobolin 750 in a Toyota Landcruiser.
The Jackaroo Garland raced at Condobolin will be transported to the United States on May 25 for his assault on the Nevada 2000 event from July 8-15.
MEDIA ENQUIRIES: Mike Porter - Tel: (07) 5591-1773, (0417) 311-997. Fax: (07) 5591-4955. E-Mail: email@example.com
WEBSITE: www.australiansafari.com.au (high resolution photographic images of Bruce Garland available)