Thanks to what William Johnson termed "one of the tackiest and most depressing-looking sports facilities anywhere" (Ice-Cold Games and a Solid-Cold Girl, Jan. 31), SI had an exciting and beautiful cover featuring Annie Henning, and the U.S. has some high hopes for gold medals in speed skating at the Winter Olympics at Sapporo. West Allis and Wisconsin are proud of our country's only refrigerated Olympic rink. If West Allis truly is a "dreary suburb of Milwaukee," Mr. Johnson should attempt to buy a home there; I did, and the closest available was in neighboring New Berlin.
Editor and General Manager
West Allis Star
West Allis, Wis.
Congratulations on a fine article. It was refreshing to see Cindy Nelson's name mentioned as a future Olympic prospect in Alpine skiing. Cindy is from Lutsen, Minn., a small town 18 miles west of my hometown of Grand Marais, and has provided many exciting moments for the ski fans in that area. We share Alpine Director Willy Schaeffler's opinion that Cindy is a future great.
You predict that the U.S.S.R. will win the hockey gold without any trouble from Sweden. But this year Sweden has a new coach, former NHL player Bill Harris, and what he has done for the team is really fantastic.
Thanks to Jim Kaplan for bringing Pat Matzdorf into the public eye (Getting Up in the World, Jan. 31). This article brought Pat only a portion of the acclaim due him. He will gain the rest of that acclaim this summer when he helps the U.S. to sweep the high jump in the Olympics.
Peter Carry illustrates the fact that Indiana is the undisputed basketball center of the world in his article about one of pro basketball's greatest franchises, the Indiana Pacers, and the enthusiasm generated by basketball in general in Indiana (A Little Hoop and a Lot of Holler, Jan. 31).
The state has produced the greatest basketball player in the history of the game, Oscar Robertson, not to mention such notables as Tom and Dick Van Arsdale, Rick Mount, Louie Dampier, Jon McGlocklin and George McGinnis. Next year's crop of rookies may include even more promising Hoosiers: Jim Price ( Louisville), Bob Ford ( Purdue), Jim Bradley ( Northern Illinois) and Joby Wright ( Indiana). One cannot mention this great game without referring to some aspect of Hoosier Hysteria.
Right on! The Pittsburgh Pirates' come-from-behind victory in the 1971 World Series was the most exciting sporting spectacle of the year ("Show of the Year," SCORECARD, Jan. 31).
So far this winter I have been snowbound in three different towns, and most of the time it has been very difficult, if not impossible, to tell if the creature walking toward me was a man, woman or grizzly bear. Therefore, your Jan. 17 cover and related article (It May Be Nautical, but It's Not the Navy) were like finding an oasis in a desert. I beg you to keep an eye on our Wyoming winter. If no letup is in sight during the next month or two, a follow-up article would be greatly appreciated.
Here's to Neil Leifer and his camera for capturing the dazzling beauty of those superskiers flying down and off the slopes (Take It Right from the Top, Jan. 24). After a recent trip to Vail, Colo., I felt a bit frustrated at not having more time to devote to this fantastic sport. Now, after paging through your article, I am psyched all over again.
Thank you for identifying those mystery skiers who leave their tracks on the impossibly steep slopes to humble and haunt us whenever we think we might be getting good. It is the best article on skiing SI has done.