I greatly enjoyed your knowledgeable coverage of Jim Ryun's victory (A Time to Remember: 3:51.3, July 25 et seq.) and its fascinating recap of the behind-the-scenes events leading up to it. Again SI scores with a unique account of a historic sports event.
Because stop watches were actuated by the meaty thumbs of human timers we shall never know just how fast Jim Ryun really ran that race. At Indy a $50,000 car can fail to qualify by a hundredth of a second on an electronic timer. Using fallible human beings and equally fallible stop watches to time records like Ryun's is an anachronism.
F. PIERCE SHERRY
Muirfield has indeed had a lady set foot in even the men's grill room (Smiling Jack Wins a Rough One, July 18). In 1951 I was in Scotland with my step-mother. We drove out to see Muirfield because the Curtis Cup Women's Team was playing there the following year and I had a very good friend, Pat O'Sullivan from Orange, Conn., who was on the team and I wanted to see the club and course. I felt the greens, traps and fairways. I was thrilled. Then our chauffeur took us into the ladies' reception room. He disappeared to find the club secretary. After 20 minutes we were completely satisfied that the ladies' lounge was beautifully furnished and charming, but we were eager to see more of the clubhouse. Our chauffeur was still missing so we decided to explore. Across the hall we found a door with a coco mat in front. We opened the door and entered what seemed to us to be the club dining room. There was no one in sight. It was a large story-and-a-half room with windows to the ceiling at each end. Tables covered with white damask cloths filled the room, and there were colored prints and photographs of all the former club presidents since about 1763 hung on the walls. We wandered around the room examining the pictures until we reached the far wall where there hung several ancient clubs among which was a silver putter presented to Muirfield by the Prince of Wales. At that exciting moment we heard a man say in a very irate tone, "Ladies! Do you realize that this is the men's grill room and no lady has ever set foot in here before? Don't you ladies respect your men's grill rooms in your country?"
We really did feel remorse. But it is a funny error for the members to state so boldly that "no lady has ever set foot in this club."
VIRGINIA CURTIS FENN
West Hartford, Conn.
I must admit that every once in a while something really great comes out of SPORTS ILLUSTRATED. Your short story Put a Lion in Your Tank (July 25) is the funniest thing I have read in years.
FRANK PARRISH JR.
Wichita Falls, Texas
Put a Lion in Your Tank was a sad effort and a real blow to real hunters and sportsmen. Guys like that Jack Crawford, who probably doesn't know a .458 Winchester Magnum from a .22 short, hunting lions? He is very, very lucky he wasn't killed. Especially dumb was his shot at a running lion from 150 yards. Wounding him made him a dangerous threat to the hunter and the natives. Crawford didn't even know how the rifle was loaded.
ACROSS THE BOARD
We'd like to thank Bob Ottum for his article (Riding the Wave of the East Coast's Surfing Boom, July 18) because it brought the great sport of surfing the attention it deserves. But we wish to question your opinion of Phil Edwards as "the best on a board."
As any good surfer and many nonsurfers know, Mike Doyle is the world's best surfer. Mike has won most, if not all, of the major surfing championships and he is regarded by the surfing magazines as the best in his field. Though Phil Edwards is the person most responsible for the growth of this great sport it was with deep regret that we read your article and did not even find the name of Mike Doyle mentioned.
Cleveland Heights, Ohio
I thoroughly enjoyed your article on the recognition of East Coast surfing, but you failed to include Texas, which feels itself very much a part of the East Coast.
ON THE MARK
Mark Kram's When Emile Got His Irish Up has been clipped from the July 25 issue and placed in my files along with other classics from the prize ring, like A. J. Liebling's Soir�e Intime, Rowland Barber's Stillman's Gym, William Fay's Hello Joe and Red Smith's The Nose. A few more stories about boxing by Kram and maybe—just maybe—being a fighter will again mean something.
ROBERT F. MITCMEL