It is with a very heavy heart that I am canceling the 2019 Davenport contest this weekend. All competitors will be receiving a full refund. I know some of you already have made arrangements with family and travel arrangments and I sincerely apologize for the inconvenience.

If you have made arrangments to be in Santa Cruz for the weekend, I encourage you to consider still going. It’s a fun town and there are a lot of good places to paddle. The surf forecast is dismal, although we’ve dealt with that before, and I wouldn’t cancel for that reason.

I’ve run the Davenport contest since 2010, and it’s been a fixture in my family’s fall. This year, it’s just not going to work. Sign-ups are very, very, low. Many categories haven’t filled a single heat, and even the biggest categories don’t fill 2. The numbers to pay for judges/times/etc are just falling way short. Insurance costs have gone way way up. Sponsor support has dropped. (Although long-time supporters Kayak Connection and Coverwater SUP continued to support, and we thank them for their support over the years.) With this and some other personal factors, I just can’t make this year’s contest work. And I’m sad and disappointed.

2020? Who knows? I’m happy to work with anyone who wants to pick up the reigns and maybe put some effort into reviving the contest.

Davenport Landing, CA
A surf contest to celebrate paddle surfing

November 9-10, 2019

Every contestant will surf Saturday and Sunday, guaranteeing at least two rounds of surfing per category entered.

  • Quarter finals, semi finals, and finals for the bigger categories.
  • All finals will be on Sunday
  • 19 minute heats

The Davenport Paddle Surf Classic has been around for many years, held at the legendary break about 20 minutes north of Santa Cruz. In previous years of the contest, we’ve had waves range from small to scary big, but always competitors that demonstrate skill, style, and sportsmanship. We celebrate all forms of paddle surfing, with divisions of kayaks, waveskis and stand up paddle boards (SUP).

We have a unique category called King of the Wave, which pits all forms of paddle surf competitors together in a head to head battle, regardless of surf craft. Most competitors enter this as a second category. Every year, we have had SUP’s, kayaks and waveskis have made the finals. Scores have been close, and it demonstrates that any one of the paddle surf craft could easily be competitive with the incredible athletes that were paddling them!

A special prize will be awarded to the highest ranked first-time competitor in each category. Meaning, if this is your first Paddle surf contest, then you qualify for a chance at a special prize.

Entry fee includes a dinner and party Saturday night, and an event T-shirt. All competitors will be entered in a raffle for sweet prizes. Last year we gave away thousands of dollars worth of gear!

 Sweatshirts available for pre-order before noon 10/20/2019.     Entries after noon on 10/20/2019 will not be guaranteed a shirt in their size.   


  • King of the Waves – Kayak, Waveski, SUP. Head to head in the battle royale.
  • Open High Performance Kayak Any “sit inside” kayak under 9 feet in length
  • Open International Class Kayak International Class standard kayak, minimum length 3 meters, max 4 meters.
  • Stand Up Paddleboard Any stand-up paddle board w/leash & powered by a single blade paddle.
  • Women’s Stand Up Paddleboard Any stand-up paddle board w/leash & powered by a single blade paddle paddled by women. Women will likely surf with the men, then have their own finals.
  • Women’s Kayak or Waveski Any sit inside kayak or waveski. Women will likely surf with the men, then have their own finals.
  • Foiled SUP –  Any stand-up paddle board w/leash & powered by a single blade paddle and a FOIL.
  • Waveski Any SOT kayak or ‘wave ski’ under 3.5 meters in length.
  • Juniors Kayak and Juniors SUP Under 18 at the time of the contest.
  • Adaptive Waveski For athletes with spinal cord injuries or amputations