I hope that someday after Thanksgiving dinner we can gather around the TV and watch the Mayflower 500 from Daytona.
ROBERT T. MILAM JR., ORLANDO
Your article on NASCAR (A Day at the Races, July 24) couldn't have been more timely in light of Yankee pitcher Jack McDowell's finger incident. The way major league baseball treats its fans is the polar opposite of the way NASCAR treats its fans, which is why the two sports are headed in opposite directions. Maybe the only way to solve baseball's problems is to force management and the players to take a course in class, grace and marketing from Richard Petty.
RONNIE DUNCAN, Raleigh, N.C.
Is SI trying to tell us that there is something athletic about driving a car? Auto racing is not a sport.
CHRIS DIFUSCO, MIKE MANUEL
As one of the women who make up 38% of the fan base of NASCAR, I would like to announce that I do not wear a bikini or a halter or tube top to the races. Furthermore, I don't anticipate wrecks. But, yes, I am smart and brand-loyal, and I buy souvenirs. I also have teeth. NASCAR is my sport of choice because it is unlike any other sport—no strikes, no wage disputes, no salary caps, no lockouts.
JULIE MOSSBARGER, Chillicothe, Ohio
The story behind NASCAR's success is that the races are incredibly entertaining to watch. Drivers do amazing things with their cars. There's also tremendous competition between old veterans and young guns, and there are heroes and villains at every race.
Editor, Stock Car Racing Magazine
Auto racing may be a fine spectacle, but I can't take seriously any sport in which the equipment is more important than the athlete. The world's finest driver will lose if he enters a race with an inferior car or if his car breaks down. This would be comparable to Pete Sampras forfeiting a match at Wimbledon because one of his racket strings broke.
RICHARD THOMAS, Spring Grove, Pa.
Having followed NASCAR racing since the dirt-track days of the late 1950s, I congratulate Michael Silver on his objective evaluation of the sport. What I don't understand is your decision to use all black-and-white photos, which denies the uninitiated a glimpse of a most colorful sport.
LES RIDOUT, Westerville, Ohio
?Photographer George Bennett believes that because the race cars' multicolored decals and logos can be distracting, the cars are best depicted in black and white. We agree.—ED.
Requiem for Sarah
I was moved by your tragic story on Sarah Devens (An End Too Soon, July 24). As a teacher and coach at a prep school, I often wonder where we should draw the line with our student-athletes. We need to be more aware of their personal pressures and stresses. I was pleased that your magazine brought attention to this issue.
THOMAS GEORGE HUGHES, Wilmington, Del.
It's disappointing to see such a fine female collegiate athlete receive attention only when tragedy strikes. An article about Devens should have been written long ago. May she rest in peace.
JULIE STOCKER, Pittsburgh