North Florida Surfers Conquer the Waves in Unique Nighttime Competition

The sun set, lighting the competition on fire this weekend, as six professional North Florida surfers took to the waves for the Red Bull Night Riders annual tow-at contest.  Thousands of local fans came out to cheer the surfers on, as Jacksonville Beach hosted the event for the first time. The chance to be crowned the best in the 904 was swiftly taken by Tristan Thompson, sweeping the competition with an inverted front side 360 air in the second round.

“It was awesome that I pulled through and won in front of a great crowd,” said 18-year-old winner Tristan Thompson. “I’ve never seen that many people at this beach for a surf event. I got in a good rhythm out there where I was able to land my tricks, and it felt amazing.”

RedBull-teamSpectators lined the Jacksonville Beach Pier to grab a prime seat for viewing the best action. The surf conditions were choppy and the tension was high for Tristan, as he had the legacy of his older brothers to uphold.  The Thompson brothers all showed strong competition, but it was the youngest who took the win from the beginning as the first surfer to take to the waves.

Podium Results

  1. Tristan Thompson
  2. Cody Thompson
  3. Ryan Briggs

Red Bull Night Riders provides surfers with competition under unique conditions, as the premier at-night contest. Surfers received 12 minutes per round to pull off their best, with a total of two rounds in the competition. Each surfer has the opportunity to win over the judges by capturing big air, pulling off a top trick and pushing the limits of their sport.

“The level of competition has always been strong at this contest,” said judge Daniel Terry.  “It’s great to see the youngest of the six surfers take the win.  The show of love for surfing from the community who came out really shined tonight.”

Completing the roster for the evening were Tristan’s brothers and past winners Cody and Evan Thompson, as well as legendary surfers Asher Nolan, Ryan Briggs and Gabe Kling. Visit for photos and more information, and join the conversation @redbullORL #NightRiders904.


The local backing won’t stop under last night’s lights at the pier.  Although three Thompsons were vying for the win in this competition, it was all in support of their older brother Trey Thompson.

“Win it for Trey is a hashtag we created before our surf shop challenge trip,” shared announcer Dane Jeffreys from Sunrise Surf Shop about a social fundraising they began to support the oldest Thompson brother on his battle against cancer. “Since Trey is fighting, we should be fighting too. It’s turned into something more than we could ever believe.  We’ve had a lot of support and this is just icing on top of the cake that’s hopefully many layers.”

Follow #WinItForTrey for more information on this great local cause.