Rincon Classic: Game On!

Annual Surf Contest Set to Begin Saturday

Bobby Martinez at the 2012 Rincon Classic
Jon Shafer/santabarbarasurfer.com

In a holding pattern since early January, organizers made it official yesterday — the 30th Annual Rincon Classic will be held this weekend. An elated Chris Keet, the annual surfing competition’s director and head of Surf Happens, made the decision early Wednesday morning to kick off the contest Saturday morning. “It has been an interesting winter with a couple of good Sundays, but with extremely small Saturdays that prompted the postponements,” he explained. “With two weeks left in the waiting period, 85 degree weather, and average to good waves and conditions in the forecast, we are all systems go.” The two-day event, held at the world famous Rincon Point in Carpinteria, concludes late Sunday afternoon with the winners announced later that evening at an awards ceremony at the Santa Barbara Maritime Museum.

The Classic, which aims to be held each year during a weekend that has optimal surf and weather conditions at Rincon, had an original eight-week waiting period this winter that extended from the first weekend of January through to the end of February. However, after Mother Nature failed to deliver the proper combo of good wind, solid waves, and a little sunshine during that window of time, Keet was left facing the unthinkable — a winter without the beloved locals-only contest. Luckily, a late hour plea to California State Parks — the public agency that permits the event — did not fall on deaf ears, and a much needed two-week extension for the waiting period was granted. “As luck would have it, everything is coming together for the nineth weekend,” said Keet. According to forecasters, two- to three-foot waves are expected throughout the day on Saturday with three- to five-foot rollers possible by Sunday early afternoon.

The first heat gets in the water at 8 a.m. on March 2. The event is free and open to the public. For more info and a complete listing of heat draws and times, go to www.rinconclassic.com.


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