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London Olympians: WA athletes Jayde Taylor (hockey), Kim Mickle (javelin) and Stephen Bird (kayaking) are touring the Mid West this week.
London Olympians: WA athletes Jayde Taylor (hockey), Kim Mickle (javelin) and Stephen Bird (kayaking) are touring the Mid West this week.

WA’s top Olympians touched down in Geraldton on Monday to launch the Western Australian Olympic Council’s Regional Tour of the Mid West.

Seven of WA’s 2012 London Olympians made the trip north.

They began doing the rounds at 27 schools yesterday, with other visits to Geraldton Surf Lifesaving Club and the city’s up-and-coming Little Athletics members.

Today, the Olympians will head to Mid West’s regional towns to inspire the dreams of hundreds of children.

Mandurah javelin thrower Kim Mickle, an Olympic debutant at London, said she would offer a simple message — never lose sight of your dreams.

“Being out in the country, it is a lot harder to become an elite athlete — being so far away from the Institute of Sports” she said.

“But saying that, half of our athletes do come from country towns, where we breed them tough and breed them strong.

“We want to encourage kids what their dreams are and that they can come true — it just takes hard work and discipline.

“We want to spread the joy of how much fun we had at the Olympics and see if they can come and join us.”

Mickle is touring with fellow West Australians Taylor Worth (archery), Jayde Taylor (hockey), Ben Offereins (4x400m), Lauren Mitchell (gymnastics) Stephen Bird and Jesse Phillips (both kayaking).

The group enjoyed an official welcome by the Mid West Chamber of Commerce and Industry at the Geraldton Club.

Mickle has developed a cult following on social media for her multi-talents which she says has helped complement her throwing exploits.

She is videoed on YouTube kicking a football more than 50 metres, walking on her hands and landing a full-court long bomb with a basketball.

She said she was a victim of “older brother syndrome” in always wanting to mix-it with her brothers.

“I got brought up in Mandurah kicking a footy all day and throwing cricket balls,” she said.

“It wasn’t until I hit high school that I realised the girls actually went shopping while the boys kicked the footy.”

WAOC executive officer Amanda Gohr said there was nothing stopping the Mid West being the grounding for more WA Olympians like Fergus Kavanagh.

“If you’ve got the will to get there; overcoming the distance and funding will all fall into place if you want to achieve it,” she said.

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