Carl Eichenlaub

World champion, builder and boatwright

Carl Eichenlaub

Sailing World Archives

Joining the Hall of Fame at age 75, Carl Eichenlaub not only merited inclusion because he was an outstanding racer in his day - winning Snipe, Star, and Lightning championships, including the 1960 Lightning Internationals (the top Lightning event before the first class Worlds in 1961). He also made a career of building boats for these classes, and his boats have been among the best, winning countless championships. In 1963, for instance, Eichenlaub won the Lighting NAs, finished second at the Snipe Nationals, and his boats swept the top three places at the Star Worlds. That same year, after a windy day decimated a portion of the Snipe fleet, he helped put everybody back together again so they could race the next day. It has been this willingness to help others get back on the water that added an extraordinary dimension to Eichenlaub's career in sailboat racing. Living and working in San Diego, the boatbuilder's reputation continued to grow over the years as he served every couple years as the U.S. Sailing Team shipwright at every Pan Am and Olympic Games since 1979. Not only has Eichenlaub been able to repair the U.S. fleet in a competent, creative, and timely way at each of these high-profile events, but his generosity and skill have been apparent to foreign competitors who have frequently been welcomed to his well-equipped portable boat shop.