About OR | Ocean Rodeo

Cold water – Rugged Proving Grounds

Vancouver Island, Canada. Far from a tropical paradise, our island is the perfect testing ground on which to develop equipment for extreme marine conditions. Storm to hurricane force wind warnings don’t make the local news; the ocean temperature is cold, all year, and; the remote, rocky, log strewn coastline is hammered relentlessly by harsh north Pacific wind and waves.

It’s our playground and we love it this way and it’s these unwelcoming conditions that drive Ocean Rodeo’s innovation. Whether you’re a recreational enthusiast or a professional mariner, you can rest assured that when the conditions slide unexpectedly into the extreme, we will have you covered.

Innovation was a necessity

Ocean Rodeo evolved out of the passions of its founder, Richard Myerscough and his lifelong friend, Ross Harrington. Growing up together, the two witnessed the formative years of windsurfing, cold water surfing, kiteboarding and SUP. Self taught and making the early models of all their equipment in the 70’s and 80’s by necessity, Richard and Ross learned that good enough was never, good enough and bring their creative and innovative outlook to every new project Ocean Rodeo endeavours upon.

Richard Myerscough – Founder

As a pre-teen, Richard competed in both sailing and windsurfing but shifted his focus entirely to windsurfing by the age of 13. The result was several world titles, a Pan Am Games medal and the honour to race for Canada at the 1998 Olympics in Seoul, Korea.

Sponsorships and the tradeshows and promotional events that come along with them introduced Richard to the business side of sport and by age 23, retired from competitive windsurfing, Richard began his career in the wetsuit & drysuit industry. First with Scubapro Canada and then, in 1992 co-founding Whites Manufacturing Ltd, resurrecting the iconic Whites diving brand with a new focus on drysuit innovation for sport, commercial marine & survival and military applications. By 2009, Whites was a global leader in dive and military drysuits and, as a result of this success, was acquired by The Aqualung Group in 2010.

Richard founded Ocean Rodeo in 2001 as an offshoot of Whites for the new sport of kiteboarding with an early focus on surface watersport drysuits. Expanding in 2002 to involve Ross Harrington and the introduction of kites, boards and, kite control bars.

Table top jump (1986)

Richard Myerscough at the Olympics (1988)

Still going strong, boosting with the new Stick shift back line trim bar. (2017)

Ross Harrington – Head of Design

Lifelong friend of Richard’s, Ross was also a champion windsurfer in the 70’s and early 80’s and combined that passion with a love for surfing and hang gliding, setting the stage perfectly for his embrace of the new sport of kiteboarding when it emerged in the late 90’s.

Ross first started designing windsurf sails in 1983 as the head of design for the Vancouver based Windsure brand before later founding his own custom sail brand, Venturi Designs in the late 80’s. Decades ahead of his time, Ross pioneered many windsurfing firsts, including the camber inducer and inset boom end and it was from his Venturi loft that Ross designed and manufactured his first kites in 1998.

Ross Harrington showing off his 1998 garage built tarp kite. (2001)

Ross Harrington still dropping in – testing a surf dry concept. (2017)

Harrington gear testing in Tofino, BC, Canada. (2002)

Continued Innovation

Never happy with the status quo; Richard and Ross continued to work and develop highly refined, performance oriented equipment. Simultaneously designing equipment for those pushing the sport’s boundaries and helping those coming into the sport with an ever evolving lineup of intuitive, easy to use designs.

Early innovative products include: the world’s first flexible kiteboards (2002); the first ever Dacron reinforced kites (2002); Constant curve leading edge kites (2002); the Mako line of deep concave kiteboards (2003); the Go-Joe leashless board recovery tool (2004); and, countless improvements to the drysuits which continue to evolve year-over-year, including improvements to the suit’s entry, comfort, breathability and the revolutionary new Standby Mode (2012). New for 2016, Ocean Rodeo again heralds the dawn of a new era in kiteboarding with the introduction of back line trim control.

Ocean Rodeo Today

While the company has grown significantly from the early days of 2001, it’s commitment to performance, safety and innovation has never wavered. 15 years later, Richard and Ross are still fully immersed in the design and development of all Ocean Rodeo products but are now surrounded by an incredible team of engineers, graphic designers, customer support and logistical staff.

Both our drysuits and kite equipment have evolved tremendously over the years. More recently the comfort and advanced function of our drysuits has led to us to exciting new markets like surfing, SUP, sailing and commercial marine / cold water survival applications.

We design, build, test, redesign, retest, rethink every product to ensure you have the safest, most enjoyable and performance oriented wind and water experience. Thank you for putting your trust in us and enabling us to continue to pursue our passions.

OR History

2001
March 25

Captive Suspension Flex panels for Dry suits.

Captive Suspension Flex panels for Dry suits.
Originally created for the Pyro Drysuit, these dual layer flex panels went on to become a major feature which greatly improved flexibility.
April 25

Dacron Kite Tubes

Dacron Kite Tubes
The first inflatable kites all used bi-laminate Mylar struts and leading edges fabrics, prone to delamination. The OR Bronco was the first kite to use a Dacron leading edge and strut tubes. Dacron remains the status quo today.
2002
March 25

Snowboard style Flex / ABS Side Wall Construction of Kite Boards

Snowboard style Flex / ABS Side Wall Construction of Kite Boards
We first showed our Outlaw 142 Flex board at Surf Expo in 2002. Made in a Canadian Snowboard factory, this was the first flexible kiteboard. All other brands at the time used surfboard style construction.
2003
March 25

Mako Concave

Mako Concave
Ocean Rodeo pioneered a whole new construction style with the complex bottom contours of the “Mako”. Built with snowboard press construction the Mako offered unparalleled concave shape. All these years later and the Mako is the longest running production kiteboard ever and comes in a wide variety of sizes and styles, cementing its status as one of the most popular kiteboards ever sold.
2007
March 25

One kite with Roll over bridle

One kite with Roll over bridle
An early pioneer in bridled leading edge inflatable kites, Ocean Rodeo introduced the roll-over bridle, delivering a massive sheeting range and a balanced safety depower system.
August 25

Leash Less Board Recovery.

Leash Less Board Recovery.
With many, many thousands in use around the world, the Go Joe has assisted many to learn and advance their skills in the sport of kite boarding safely. The Go Joe eliminates the need for board leashes, which prior to 2007 was one of the major cause of injury in the sport.  
2010
July 25

Surf Dry Suit

Surf Dry Suit
Pushing the limits of drysuit technology, the Surf Dry used an innovative two layer system to deliver an extremely flexible and streamlined drysuit. The design crossed over into multiple applications and is now the world’s number one selling diving drysuit.
2011
March 25

Forward Swept Wing

Forward Swept Wing
Extended wingtips offer riders greater leverage for tight, snappy turns and greater sheeting range for variable wind conditions. All, while not changing the overall draft of the kite. This innovative first is what made the Ocean Rodeo Razor a big air / freestyle kite looping machine.
2012
March 25

Standby Mode for Drysuits

Standby Mode for Drysuits
A true revolution in the concept of a drysuit, Standby Mode allows the user to quickly don or doff their neck seal, converting the suit from waterproof and breathable foul weather gear to a fully dry, drysuit in under 30 seconds. Originally introduced in the sport / recreational markets, Standby Mode is quickly becoming a must have option for all commercial marine drysuits as well.
2017
April 1

Stick-Shift Control System

Stick-Shift Control System
Premiered at Surf Expo 2016, the Stick Shift back line trim control bar features: bar end Sidewinder trim control; Helix force tensioned rear lines; G-Stop single hand activated sliding stopper and; a unique Groove Bar designed to flush all sand and debris for smooth, low maintenance operation. Developed over a 5 year period in conjunction with Rudo Enserink and Camosun College’s Technology Access Center, the Stick Shift represents a milestone in Ocean Rodeo’s innovative history. Conceived as a solution to countless design challenges and delivering on a promise of a clean, ultra simple control bar solution, the Stick Shift represents…