Every November, the world’s biggest and fastest offshore racing series comes to Key West. Race World Offshore, or Powerboat, is a week-long powerboating series that features races, shows, and parties, culminating in the grand-daddy of the super boat season: the world championships. That means the world’s fastest boats going full throttle, speeding through Key West waters in pursuit of the world championship title. Engines roaring, these boats practically fly across the water, reaching speeds well over 100 miles per hour, all making the annual Powerboat Championships in Key West a must-see, racing fanatic or not.
Powerboat festivities last a week (November 7 - 14, 2021), with the races spread out over three days: Truman Waterfront Cup (Nov. 10), Southernmost Continental Champion (Nov. 12), and the UIM World Champion (Nov. 14).
Although there are good spots to watch the races from the mainland, we recommend the view from the sea. Our partners Fury Watersports camp out every year at the end of the race course in their catamaran. Not only do you see the speedboats powering toward you, but you also get to see them turn in the race to the finish. It’s the best seat in all Powerboat Races.
If tickets are already sold out, other good spots for seeing the races are the Outer Mole and Fort Zach. The Outer Mole pier is probably the closest you’ll get to the boats outside of Fury’s catamaran, but if you want to spend the day on the beach after the races, Fort Zach is especially appealing.
Coinciding with the Powerboat World Championships is the Florida Powerboat Club’s annual Offshore Poker Run. Starting in Miami and running through the backwaters of the Keys, the offshore poker run island-hops between Key Largo, Islamorada, Marathon, and Bahia Honda. The offshore poker run lasts from November 10-15, 2021. However, participants must register beforehand on the Florida Powerboat Club website.
The hub of all Powerboat activities is at the Truman Waterfront Park, located at the tip of Southard Street in Key West. Don’t miss the opening and awards ceremony, Thursday and Saturday concerts, Build-a-Boat contest near the USCGC Ingham, and the Truman Waterfront Race Village, occurring daily throughout the week-long event. Other events around the island include the World’s Fastest Boat Parade down Duval Street (Nov. 7, 4 p.m.) and the Duval Powerboat Street Party (Nov. 12, 7:30 - 10:30 p.m.).
Sound like your type of vacation? We’ll see you in November.
Find your own excitement in Key West waters with a guided jet ski tour. Now for a limited time, 24 North Hotel is offering a 90-minute tour for two on a tandem jet ski, in addition to an arrival gift bag with beach vacation necessities, and more. Find out more, here.