TIGERS, TRUNCHEONS AND DOG TEAMS
In your article Tigers, Truncheons and Traditions (SI, Oct. 31) describing the annual Clemson-South Carolina U. football rivalry you quote Tex Enright, the South Carolina coach, as musing on the unusual date of this game and saying: "This game was here before I was. It belongs to the people of South Carolina, and if they want it played in Nome, Alaska on the 20th of December, I figure we'll play it."
Slush ice is forming in the Bering Sea and in a few weeks it will be frozen over. We, the people of Nome, will be isolated for the rest of the winter and will have nothing much to do, so would welcome South Carolina's traditional football game in Nome.
We extend to Coach Enright and Coach Howard and the people of South Carolina an invitation to come to Nome. We will have the white carpet (which will be snow) out and dog teams for transportation. We will be able to furnish fur parkas for the cheer leaders but will have to substitute Eskimo ice cream for hamburgers and hot dogs. For entertainment between halves there will be Eskimo blanket tossing and dancing. For mothers and children we can arrange for Santa and his reindeer to be there on the 20th of December.
BOYD C. HARWOOD
STARS AND SNIPES FOREVER
I find that King Cardenas' royal scorn for other racing classes (Charlie and the Boys, SI, Nov. 21) sticks in my plebeian craw. His assurance that Star boat sailors are the best in the world is convenient in that it leaves little doubt as to where he ranks himself. However, I see little to justify his implied claim to world superiority as a sailor.
Success in the Star class presupposes an initial investment of approximately $4,000, required to purchase a top-flight Star boat with all the trimmings. To a majority of sailors this is an excessive, if not a prohibitive, expense. Even within the class this expense actually limits the field, for of the 3,683 Star boats in existence, no more than 500 could be rated top-flight boats. The fact is that owners who cannot afford custom-built Stars, trailers, haul-out equipment and annually new sails race at a distinct disadvantage that has nothing to do with their sailing ability. Star boats have in effect priced themselves out of most of the competition, and any exclusiveness that results depends as much on bank accounts as on racing skill.
Thus, success in the Star class has only limited validity as an index of sailing skill, and no validity as a basis for claims of superiority over other classes. Should Champion Cardenas care to discover where he really stands he might try some races without the high-priced help of Kurush V. My suggestion would be that he step from the Stars down to earth and some peasant dinghies, where the emphasis is on the sailors and the boats are all the same.
? Carlos de Cardenas, who calls Star sailing "an intellectual sport," just took his second world title, with son Carlos Jr. crewing and son Jorge the runner-up. Paul H. Smart, president of the International Star Class Racing Assn., with his son Hilary, winner of the 1948 Olympic competition, believes Mr. Hoyt's charge that the Star boats have "priced themselves out of most of the competition" is unjust. Mr. Smart estimates the maximum cost of a top-flight Star to be $3,100 with sails, and championship-caliber boats, like Skip Etchells' Old Greenwich Star, may be ordered for $2,750 finished, or $995 unfinished. Finally, the number of Stars has just jumped from 3,683 to 3,701, the Soviet Union has registered 15 of them, built by the Shipyard of Sporting Shipbuilding of the All-Union Central Soviet of the Trade Unions of Leningrad.—ED.
THE WICHITA WIZARD
Occasionally featuring a profile of an outstanding champion of a small sailboat class is an excellent idea. However, while realizing that Mr. de Cardenas' opinions do not necessarily reflect the views of SI, we, along with 10,000 other Snipe enthusiasts, feel that we ought to defend the good name of Snipe. Contrary to the opinion of Mr. de Cardenas, the Snipe is not a kid's boat. To support our contention, we suggest that you tell your readers about the " Wichita Wizard," Snipe Champion Ted A. Wells.
1955 Snipe Fleet Champion
1954 Mich. State Snipe Class Champion
Grand Rapids, Mich.
?Theodore A. Wells, chief engineer of the Beech Aircraft Corporation, earned the title " Wichita Wizard" by winning numerous national and international Snipe championships. Twice the world champion Snipe sailor, Wells contributes his success to meticulous mean calculation, taking into account such minutiae as the wrinkles in his mainsail. Wells feels that Snipe competition is "much tougher" than Star boat racing because there are four times as many Snipe sailors and regattas. Furthermore, a Snipe skipper must survive regional and national competition before qualifying for the International, where each nation is allowed one boat. Wells's next important race will be the Mid-winter International Snipe Regatta at Clearwater, Florida early this March. "Competition," says Wells, "is the only thing that makes good sailors."—ED.
SQUARE DANCE IN FRAMMIS
To anyone who has danced, watched or listened, it should be self-evident that the calls of the square dance caller are a natural for Frammis (E & D, Nov. 28). This is especially true if one thinks back to one's early dancing days when one had to contend not only with the calls but also, possibly, with an unfamiliar caller. Annie Howe, heresy shirt simple offer cull, respectively dead eye Kated two Dean Edwards, Collar add oh Staid Squire Dunce Culler Chump: