Kenny Moore's coverage of this year's New York Marathon (There Are Only 26 Miles to Go, Nov. 3) was, in my view, second to none. He not only described the progress of the front-runners, but he also allowed us to follow the women runners, the less-talented runners and the foreign runners as well. Congratulations to Alberto Salazar and Moore, two men who excelled at the marathon.
According to your article, Alberto Salazar was officially credited with a time of 2:09:41. However, in the picture of him crossing the finish line, the digital clock shows 2:09:40—a small difference maybe, but what if his time had been 2:08:34, the world record? Was the digital clock unofficial?
?Yes. A computerized timing system was used to officially clock all runners to the hundredth of a second. In addition, the winners—Salazar and Grete Waitz—were each timed by hand. Salazar's official clocking was 2:09:41.00.—ED.
Grete Waitz, runner nonpareil, wins her third straight New York Marathon, breaks the women's world record by almost two minutes and is tucked away in the article with a 3" x 6" picture. Come on! Move Alberto Salazar over a few inches and give another great runner equal cover billing.
It took the Philadelphia Phillies 98 years to finally win a World Series and SI puts a marathon runner on the cover! To add to a Phillie fan's misery, the article on the Series covered only Relief Pitcher Tug McGraw (He Kept Tugging Away at the Heartstrings). Although I love Tugger, it was disappointing not to read about the other players who helped bring the championship to Philly.
RUDNAY AND JENNER
The articles in your Nov. 3 issue on Jack Rudnay (Front and Center) and Bruce Jenner (Hey, Mister Fantasy Man) offered a tremendous contrast. I for one would appreciate more articles on class, humanitarian athletes like Rudnay and fewer on self-centered "fantasy men" such as Jenner. Unfortunately, we don't read or hear anywhere near enough about athletes who contribute to those less fortunate in life.
Curry Kirkpatrick's piece on Bum Phillips (Hallelujah, He's, Uh, Bum, Oct. 27) is extraordinary. His portrayal of this delightful individual extends beyond the confines of Phillips' person and into the Texas culture that helped form him.
BRUCE COFFEY JR.
Given the choice, I'd trade 10 Joe Garagiolas, three Tony Kubeks, a Tom Seaver, two Frank Giffords and 750 Howard Cosells for one Bum Phillips. When he finishes coaching, ask him to get hisself up to the broadcastin' booth. We need fresh air up there.
Before measuring Oail Andrew Phillips for a halo, I'd advise SI readers to reread the part about how he got to be general manager of the Oilers. Sid Gillman brought Phillips into the pros and made him a head coach, albeit under a tight rein, and then, "with Gillman out of town," Phillips went to the owner and "demanded that Gillman be barred from the locker room and practice field as well.... Within a month, Gillman had departed and Phillips had both jobs." There's a name for that kind of person. It's, uh, a bum.
New York City
I enjoyed reading Curry Kirkpatrick's article on the Oilers and their chief cowpoke. I take exception, however, to Kirkpatrick's facetious reference to the "amazing Bill Peterson" and his [1-18] coaching record with the Oilers. For my father to have won even one game with a franchise that Kirkpatrick so accurately described as having the " NFL's cheapest owner, the most outdated practice facilities and an embarrassment of a front-office operation" must be considered more than amazing. It was incredible!
BILL PETERSON JR.