Hayden Kenny shaped his first surfboard around 1959. This was done in the cow shed on his grandfather’s farm near Maryborough, Queensland, Australia.
By 1962, he realising that he needed to be more involved in the developing surfing lifestyle, Hayden made the move to Alexandra Headland where, Hayden surfboards, was born. Hayden went on to become Australia’s first ironman champion in 1966, and relocated Hayden surfboards to a larger factory in 1974. Over the next few years Hayden’s interest had leaned towards the helicopter rescue side of life saving, becoming a volunteer in 1979, and later a Full time crewman.
By mid-1981 Hayden had decided to concentrate on a career in the helicopter rescue service and leave Hayden surfboards, that had by this time diversified into making slsa competition paddle boards and surf skis. With the Australian economy starting to struggle, unemployment on the rise, orders had become very slow, what would happen to Hayden surf boards? The answer was simple, as boards and skis were two very separate and specialised craft, the company would be split down the middle and taken over by two of it’s long standing employees still operating from the same shed. Mick Hopper retaining Hayden surfboards and Graham Cook the all new Hayden skis. From this point on both companies grew and gained respect in the surf lifesaving community. However in 1992 Mick and Graham who had worked together for 20 years, and friends for over 30 years, decided the best path forward for both of them was to reunite the two companies, on that day, Hayden surfcraft as we know it today came into being.
The next 20 years would see Hayden surfcraft make it’s mark as a leading manufacturer of surf craft in Australia and worldwide. Pioneers in both design and manufacturing processes, including the first vacuum infused skis in Australia, now a widely used process. By 2001 we were exporting 34% of our production, this did not go unnoticed and Mick and Graham were proud to stand before their peers and accept an industry award for excellence in export for a small business. Our products now include: surf skis, paddles, paddle boards nipper boards , rescue boards , kayaks , stand up boards, long distance boards and skis, many different styles of surf boards, including retro and reproduction timber boards, not to mention an extensive accessories and clothing range.
We have worked with many Olympic, world, and Australian champions, both past and present, Michael King, Guy Andrews, Kenny Wallis, Kerri Thomas, Kristy Munroe and 2012 Australian national iron women champion Rebecca Creedy, are just some of those athletes. Clint Robinson, Australia’s most successful surf life saver, ever, whose career spanned over 20 years and used only craft supplied by us to win 36 national title gold medals, and even won his Olympic gold medal in Barcelona using a paddle made by, and bearing the Hayden surfcraft name.
In 2012 Hayden surfcraft relocated for a second time, this time to a purpose built factory, designed by us to build our craft with upmost efficiency to give our customers the best possible value for money. Quality, Dedication and Innovation, have been the foundation that Hayden surfcraft is built on and will be for many years to come. The Hayden surfcraft story has so far spanned 50 years from it’s humble beginnings in a cow shed, to the icon in surf sports it is today , and will continue for another 50 years with the same dedication and enthusiasm .