This Easter weekend’s Million Dollar Run race is set to be bigger and more exciting than ever.
Event organizers have brought in even more resources – including more corporate sponsors – to ensure the race, and the weekend, is a success. Million Dollar Run will take place at Kaibo on Monday, 17 April at 1pm sharp.
The race will pit some of the fastest boats in the Western Caribbean and North America against each other in an intense hour of cross island boat racing.
The race starts and finishes at Kaibo. There will be a day-long party with music and up-to-the-minute radio coverage from chosen points around the race route.
‘We are excited to be able to offer the whole family something at Million Dollar Run,’ states Searlina Bodden of Monster Media. ‘From the Jaguar display to the Kid’s Zone, there will be a bit of eye candy for everyone.
‘We have added so much to the event this year – a luxury car display, a live telecast – and that was all thanks to our fabulous corporate sponsors,’ Ms Bodden explains.
Million Dollar Run is co-presented by Ugland Offshore Racing and The Residences at The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman. Cable and Wireless Broadband, Cayman 27, Cayman Airways, caycompass.com and Johnny Walker Black Scotch are gold sponsors of Million Dollar Run.
‘If Million Dollar Run is a production – and believe us it is – then our sponsors are the stars of the cast,’ states Ms Bodden. ‘We are lucky to have very interactive sponsors who work with us on site. It makes the process much more fun.’
Andreas Ugland of Ugland Offshore Racing co-founded the event with Kenny Rankin in 2002.
‘The Million Dollar Run was born in conversations between Andres Ugland and myself,’ Mr. Rankin said. ‘As two local businessmen with an active interest in enhancing the lifestyle and tourism product of the Cayman Islands, a high end sporting event was the obvious choice.’
The mechanics of poker run boat racing are actually quite simple. Each participating boat navigates a carefully charted course, stopping at several checkpoints along the route to pick up a sealed envelope containing a single playing card. At the final checkpoint, the remaining cards are pulled, the envelopes are opened and the crew holding the best poker hand is declared the winner.
At the Million Dollar Run, the racers will tear out of Kaibo’s start point. At speeds reaching in excess of 100 miles per hour in their top class crafts, the racers will take the turn around North West Point, continuing up the coast to the Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman resort. At that point, they will retrieve their second card. After a second lap, they will return to the waiting spectators at Kaibo and randomly retrieve their final three cards.
The Residences at The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman was the first sponsor of Million Dollar Run. This year, as it’s the first with the hotel open, the hotel will play a major part in the festivities.
‘I knew about this [Million Dollar Run] from the very beginning through my friendship with Andreas [Ugland] and Dale [Crighton], said Residences developer Michael Ryan. ‘I felt it was an opportunity to bring another world class event to Cayman and I believe that it is showing that we are able to attract and host events at a world level.’
The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman will host a banquet at The Periwinkle Restaurant Friday, 14 April, with a champagne reception afterwards at The Silver Palm Lounge. The reception is open to the public.
Vampt Motors-Jaguar has also signed onto Million Dollar Run as the official car. At both the Friday event at The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman and the Monday race event at Kaibo, the company will have the 2006 X and S Type Jaguars on display.
At Kaibo, there will be a special section dedicated to the cars, where the public can get an up-close look. Vampt Motors Jaguar is also the sponsor of the Outlaw Class prize at Monday’s race, which is for boats less than 500 CCs.
On race day at Kaibo, four coveted prizes will be given away; Best Time, Best Crew, Outlaw Class and Best Hand. Crighton Properties will sponsor the Best Time prize and Vampt Motors Jaguar will present the Outlaw Class prize.
Cayman 27 will air a post show featuring footage of the race and live footage of the card drawing on Monday at 3pm.
Call 943-SPIN for ferry times aboard the Sundancer and the Thriller Boat.