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Image of the Week: Left Hanging

Last Wednesday, photographer Jay Nichols and I headed to the Miss GEICO Offshore Racing Shop in Riviera Beach, Fla. For Nichols, that meant a trip across the state. For me, it meant a trip across the country. For both of us, the journey couldn’t have been more worthwhile.

That’s because as it happened we arrived on the very first day of testing for the team’s 44-foot catamaran with its new twin Mercury Racing 1650 Race engines.


Pretty black outboards all in a row—on law enforcement boats in South Florida at sunset. Photo courtessy/copyright Jay Nichols/Naples Image.

We scheduled the trip for a feature, which will run in the upcoming July/August issue of Speed On The Water magazine, almost two months ago. At the time I picked the date to visit the shop, neither the Miss GEICO crew nor I had any idea they’d be putting the cat through its first test session on the day we arrived. Timing, as they say, is everything.

One of the best things about working with Jay Nichols is that his photographer eyes never rest. He’s always looking for something to shoot—the images from the trip that you’ll see in the upcoming magazine are unusual and amazing—and it’s not always related to the subject. But he always finds something compelling. He oftens finds the extraordinary in the ordinary.

Take the image above, for example, of a group of Palm Beach County Sheriff boats powered by an array of Mercury outboards. Of course, this isn’t the first time you’ve seen a bunch of black outboards. But the symmetrical grouping of them hanging off the transoms of their vessels, all out of the water on lifts, in near sunset conditions is unusual—and in its own way, spectacular.

Related Story: Miss GEICO First Test Session ‘Beyond Expectations’