I appreciated your article on the Boston Marathon (Downhill Racer, April 23). It is indeed the most prestigious footrace in America today, and your coverage of Bill Rodgers' victory was superb.
Two years ago, I ran at Boston. It was a very warm day, and I suffered heat exhaustion and muscle spasms at 21 miles. Luckily, two spectators jumped out to massage my foot, offer encouragement and send me on my way. I never found out who they were, but I owe a lot to them for helping me to finish the race. It was an agonizing but beautiful experience, and I'm certain that many similar acts of camaraderie occurred this year.
The aspect of the Boston Marathon that sticks foremost in my mind isn't necessarily the battle for first place. It's the drama that unfolds at all levels of this competition. The encounters between athletes and spectators are only one example.
I enjoyed Kenny Moore's fine coverage of Bill Rodgers' record-breaking effort in the Boston Marathon. However, the limited scope of Moore's reporting astonishes me. Perhaps he did not notice the 20 world-class athletes competing in the third annual National Wheelchair Marathon, which was held in conjunction with the Boston event.
May 6, 1979
Competing along with the runners (a 15-minute head start helps to avoid confusion), Ken Archer of Akron won the Wheelchair Marathon in 2:38:59.
Congratulations should be extended to all who competed in this remarkable race, but especially to three winners: Bill Rodgers, Joan Benoit and Ken Archer.
MICHAEL J. SHEEHAN
After participating in the Boston Marathon—perhaps the most thrilling, inspiring and satisfying event of my life—I was disillusioned with your coverage of the women runners. Kenny Moore managed to squeeze in only one paragraph about Joan Benoit and Patti Lyons dueling at 19 miles and one other about winner Benoit's cold shower and black toenails.
Perhaps most infuriating was the entry in FOR THE RECORD, which mentioned only Bill Rodgers. A casual reader might wonder if the women runners were there at all.
CARLA M. KAULL
Please help us. We are still a little bewildered by the Masters (Fuzzy Came In Loud and Clear, April 23). Where is that putter of Fuzzy Zoeller's?
•Back in Zoeller's golf bag. It came down just about where Fuzzy had been standing when he tossed it in the air, and caddie Jerry Beard walked over and picked it up.—ED.
Although Clive Gammon's article on Spectacular Bid (Big Horse Comin', April 23) attempts to characterize trainer Bud Delp as a rambunctious and flamboyant—but compassionate and sensitive—man, it misses the mark. Delp bad-mouths the jockeys (Franklin, Cordero, Velasquez), the trainers (Veitch, Jolley) and even Bid's owners, who committed the sin of being underfoot on the day of the Florida Derby when they came to see their horse run. Indeed, the only words of praise Delp seems to have are for "his" horse. If hitting one exercise boy, talking about hitting another and berating Ronnie Franklin before the national media are samples of what it takes to become a winning Kentucky Derby trainer, Delp should have it made. It is really unfortunate, though, that while Spectacular Bid continues to demonstrate his considerable class, his trainer continues to show a complete lack of class.
Huntington Beach, Calif.
Pat Putnam's analysis of the Mike Ross-man-Victor Galindez WBA light-heavyweight title fight was very accurate (Losing the Title Singlehandedly, April 23). For days after the fight, all I heard or read was how great Galindez was and what a chicken Rossman is. I think Jimmy DePiano, Rossman's father and manager, summed it up best when he said of Galindez' regained title, "It's a loan, not a gift." Boxing needs more chickens like Mike Rossman.
Victor Galindez may be the WBA world light-heavyweight champion, but his lack of sportsmanship overshadows his boxing talent. If Mike Rossman does get a much-deserved rematch and Stanley Christodoulou is not the referee, then I feel certain that Galindez will once again be the challenger instead of the champion.
DOUGLAS R. KRAUS
BEATING THE HOUSE
That will teach me not to reveal my age. Actually, I'm a boy of 44, not an older man of 45, as reported (The Odds Couple, April 16).
Your article about Keith Taft and me was fair and precise, except for one small point on what the card-counting blackjack player should do with a pair of 7s versus a dealer's 10. The answer is: "Stand if playing a single-deck game in Nevada, hit if playing multiple-deck games, as in the Bahamas, France or London, and surrender in Atlantic City."
To describe Keith Taft, a man who spends so much of his time in gambling casinos and much more of it figuring out how to beat them, as a "deeply religious Baptist" is a joke. If he spent a fraction of the time he puts into gambling on church activities, he would be better off.
By the way, I assume that the glass shown in front of Taft in the picture on page 66 of your article contained Coke with a wedge of lime.
KENNETH D. COMMON
Adult Sunday School Teacher
Southern Baptist Church
Oak Harbor, Wash.
Readers of The Odds Couple may also enjoy seeing Secrets, a PBS-TV special I wrote and produced that will be broadcast in June. A feature segment of our program shows Keith Taft and his hidden blackjack computer in action, gambling—and winning—under the unsuspecting noses of security personnel at a leading Nevada casino.
New York City
Since when has Las Vegas-type gambling (blackjack) become sport?
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