The storm system that hammered South Florida late last week took a toll on the Florida Powerboat Club’s first Land-Sea-Air Poker Run to Key West for the weekend. The event ended up with seven high-performance boats making the run from Fort Lauderdale to the southernmost city in the United States. Most of the motorcycles and all of the aircraft signed up for the event cancelled.
Despite that weather affected this year’s turnout, Jones says he plans to offer the Land-Air-Sea Poker Run next year. Photo courtesy/copyright Florida Powerboat Club.
“Everybody who went had a good time, but the weather was horrendous—the winds were awful,” said Stu Jones, the owner and founder of the Florida Powerboat Club. “The aircraft had to turn around and go home. We had boats cancel because they didn’t like the weather; we had motorcycle participants cancel because they didn’t want to get wet. When people come to Florida for a few days of vacation they expect nice weather, and if there’s even the possibility of bad weather they don’t even show up. And I can’t say I blame them.”
Despite the low turnout, Jones said he plans to include the run in next year’s FPC event schedule. “I don’t think our timing choice was bad—May is not generally considered to be a rainy time of year here,” he said. “Key West was going off. The bars were packed, the hotels were full. Obviously, people love Key West and the city is doing great with its tourism. It’s ‘full speed ahead’ down there.”
Next up—as in leaving tomorrow morning—is the club’s five-day Bahamas Poker Run. At present, six performance center consoles (the event is only open to outboard-powered center consoles and express cruisers that Jones places in his club’s “Sportboat Divison”) are registered for the event, which starts in Miami.
“This is going to be the longest run in the history of the club,” said Jones. “We’ll be going more than 600 miles round-trip. Our first stop is Paradise Island, and then we go on all the way through the Abaco Islands before we come back home.”