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Unfortunately The Jackman Waterman Classic will not be held this year (2024)

The Jackman Waterman Classic, open to qualified lifeguards only, is a 12km open ocean paddle race that starts at Waipu Cove and ends at Mangawhai Heads. The event is held in honour of legendary waterman and long-time Muriwai Lifeguard and big wave surfer Dave Jackman.

Events this year include:

Paddleboard - Under 19, Master, Open

Surf Ski - Under 19, Master, Open


Surf Canoe

Waka Ama (must be filled with qualified lifeguards)

Dave Jackman made history by being the first surfer to ride Sydney’s infamous Queenscliff Bombora in 15-foot surf on a longboard in 1961. Born and raised in Harbord (now Freshwater) on Sydney’s Northern Beaches, Jackman relocated to NZ around 1963 where he lived on Auckland’s West Coast at Muriwai Beach until he passed away in 2014. He is an inductee to the Australian Surfing Hall of Fame.

In 2009, the then Surf Lifesaving Northern Region Lifesaving manager Tony Baker and MHVLS Lifeguard Dean Storey decided to create an event that would honour Jackman’s prowess as an all-round waterman.

Storey, who is a top board paddler and has competed in the Molokai Race in Hawaii several times, decided to link with neighbouring club Waipu Cove to create a long distance race between the two clubs. The event is one of the only long-distance open ocean races of its kind in NZ, something the Mangawhai Heads club is proud of. 

The event hosts both board paddling and canoe and is growing in popularity each year. 

 The Jackman Waterman Classic will be held on ? 2024 start time 11.00am. Entry and payment must be received by 10.00am Friday 17 March 2023 Please register online here.

Any queries contact


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