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Image Of The Week: Floating Card Stop Mechanics

Captured during the Florida Powerboat Club’s Tampa Bay Poker Run last month, the floating-card-stop image below needs no explanation if you’re into high-performance powerboating. Boats lining up to collect cards from another boat during poker runs is far from an unusual sight. You’ve probably seen it so often you take it for granted.

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Follow the leader, grab your card and don’t fall in the water—that’s the goal, at least (click image to enlarge). Photos courtesy/copyright Florida Powerboat Club.

But if you’re outside of the go-fast boating world and looking in, the scene is unusual. You see an orderly line of high-performance catamarans, V-bottom sportboats and center consoles forming a slow-moving semi-circle around a stationary vessel. On the deck of that boat, a bikini-clad woman holds a long pole with a playing card attached to the end of it. As the conga line of boats passes the stationary boat, someone in each moving boat has to grab the card from the end of the pole without slowing up the line.

That’s the objective, at least. Enjoy poker runs long enough and you’re bound to see either a card—or something heavier—end up in the water.

But to really get an idea of what it all looks like, you have to view it from above. This Image of the Week presents that view, and while common to poker-runners its downright strange to pretty much anyone else.

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A closer look at card stop mechanics (click image to enlarge).

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