by Ian Grant
A serious ankle injury has forced promising Australian Olympic Laser skipper Klade Hauschildt to place his dinghy racing career on hold.
Normally the Noosa River Yacht and Rowing Club sailor would be involved with extensive training sessions and racing on the tricky Noosa River estuary to ensure he is boat fit for the coming summer.
But unfortunately as every Laser dinghy sailor has leant to understand personal fitness is a key factor behind achieving top results in the class.
However while his Laser has remained dry and rugged up under cover on the dinghy cradle Klade has remained tactically aware with racing in the one design Farr 30 and the exciting Melges 32 classes.
Sure the ankle was in the final healing process and Klade was becoming a little ‘stir crazy’ from missing the endless hours of training and hiking from the straps on the Laser when he accepted the tactician’s role with the Gladstone husband and wife racing team of Jon and Jeanine Drummond on Loco.
This was an important career opportunity for Klade to test his tactical experience in a totally different and unfamiliar class.
Naturally he was his normal modest self when we met on the dock at Abel Point Marina during the Airlie Beach Race Week last month.
He explained his injury meant it was far too painful to sail his Laser but there was little chance in slowing the healing process with racing in the one design Farr 30 at Airlie Beach followed by crewing with elite sailors Peter Conde and the Stephen Girdis cousins of the same name on Funnelweb at Hamilton Island.
Loco faced some stiff opposition from the Townsville crew on the Leon Thomas skippered Guilty Pleasures 111 however they held a firm grip on winning the Silver Medal after they beat the eventual title winner Guilty Pleasures 111 by a comfortable one minute 20 seconds in the final race at Airlie Beach.
As expected the racing for the Melges 32 crown at the Audi Hamilton Island Race Week became a nip-n-tuck tactical dogfight between the reigning Australian champions on Funnelweb and the Noel Leigh-Smith helmed Southport Yacht Club entry Desperado.
Funnelweb won five of the ten races but her inconsistent scores of 4-5-5-6 forced them to fall one point short of winning the Gold Medal ahead of the Southport crew in Desperado.
Klade Hauschildt naturally had a sun tanned smile on his face after gaining valuable career experience from two intensive weeks of tactical one design racing in Queensland’s major keel yacht regattas.
He gained further important career exposure when he stowed his sea-bag on the Anthony Bell owned super-maxi Loyal as part of the delivery crew to Sydney.
Naturally Klade was disappointed with the interruption to his Laser racing program but made some important contacts which promise to fulfil his ambition to become a professional yacht racing crewmember.