Powell, Colja and Chastre.
Powell, Colja and Chastre. Jerad Williams

Golden girls sparkle for Cudgen

A GOLDEN female masters trio shone for the Cudgen Headland Surf Life Saving Club yesterday.

Pleasant conditions at the Cudgen-hosted Allphones State Age Surf Life Saving Championships at Kingscliff levelled the competitors down to their strength and endurance, but spills and upsets were still to be found.

Jennifer Chastre, Karen Powell and Joanne Colja proved that no matter how many years young you area, it is still possible to successfully battle both the ocean and the State’s best surf competitors.

Chastre, Powell and Jan Geilis gained gold in the (combined) over 150 years board relay, while Colja reaped her gold in the 45 to 49 years two-kilometre run, and also silver in the 170 years beach sprint relay with Sue Eke, Joanne McWilliam and Leanne Seary.

Head coach Phil Klein said Geilis went on to take gold in the over-60s ski and Charlie Buchanan gained silver in the men’s two-kilometre beach run.

“Considering Cudgen’s smaller numbers compared with other clubs, we probably did pretty well. But unfortunately I had to leave early to head back to work,” Klein said.

Powell said the board was definitely her and her team’s pet event.

“We really worked hard for the win,” she said.

“The conditions were generally tame, with some shore break that was a little tricky, but this is our beach and we know the conditions.

“Today, as well as the board, I’m competing in the swim and rescue tube race.”

The Cudgen member of eight years praised her teammate Chastre as a “gun swimmer”.

“I’ve been a Kingscliff local for the last 31 years.

“We’ve all been to a few carnivals. I’ve been to Queensland and Australian titles and we’ve all been to the Australian titles, which were a real highlight.”

Cudgen chairman David Field said his masters boatmen, Geoff Buckman, Rob Blythe, Rob Harries, Doug Fewtrell and Mark Buckman on sweep, gained third in their first heat then third in their second chance, where their medal chances ended.

“Every one of them have degrees – two surveyors, a teacher, an engineer and an occupational health and safety manager for Austar,” Field said.

Powell said she had won a silver medal at last year’s Queensland titles and Geilis was a world champion.

“To be honest, I’m the least successful of the ladies,” the humble life saver said. “But we’ve got a very strong female masters team here at Cudgen.

“I’m hoping to have picked up another gold by the end of the day, but I’ll probably just manage the gold I’ve already got, which is still a good result.”

Field said Cudgen’s masters scored seventh place overall, which was a good effort among 70 other country and city clubs.



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