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1251Re: [Marlboro_Raceway] Athletes?

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  • Rick Mandelson
    Mar 1, 2008
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      You've got a case of the gray hair..................
      Most of the drivers in the old days were slim and there are pictures to prove it.
      ----- Original Message -----
      Sent: Saturday, March 01, 2008 1:17 AM
      Subject: Re: [Marlboro_Raceway] Athletes?


      In my time, the tires were skinny and the drivers were fat :-)

      Don; Haines

      Stephen Lloyd <slloydmarlboro@ yahoo.com> wrote:

      An interesting discussion!
      I'm of two schools of thought here: Probably becuase I just got my latest issue of "Sports Car" from SCCA, featuring a driver profile, the initial reaction is to say that "no," drivers aren't athletes. The article in Sports Car relates the story of a portly gentleman who looks about as far from an athlete as possible -- downright portly and more a candidate for heart problems than success in a racing car. A walk through the paddock on any Summit Point SCCA Regional weekend would probably show a significant percentage of chunky, overweight drivers who certainly don't capture the image of the svelte, muscular people we see in tennis, marathons or bicycling. Yours truly ain't exactly Mr. Universe, himself! Then I thought about this again, and would have to say emphatically, that "yes," race drivers are athletes. They use their bodies, muscles, ednurance and minds to compete. If that isn't a sufficient practical understanding of the word, I can't imagine a better one. Some just do this "athlete thing" better than others. And if being in shape is a strict requirement for athletes, I dare say there are hundreds, if not thousands, of summertime softball players -- to cite just one example -- who are in no better shape physically than Joe Regional racing his Mazda. A cursory examination of any weekend's amateur golfers would probably yield the same results. But who would ever consider saying that softball players or golfers aren't athletes?
      To those, espceially the "stick and ball" types who believe racing drivers aren't athletes, I would suggest that your definition of the word is probably limited, and more than likely does not bear close scrutiny.
      Steve Lloyd

      Bob Storck <bstorck@sprynet. com> wrote:
      I've grown weary arguing with the readers and writers of the sports
      pages as to whether race drivers are athletes ... some "traditionalists"
      resist even categorizing drivers as "Sportsmen" implying that by relying
      on an unclean internal combustion engine, they themselves are not worthy.

      Just because those lauded by the sports media do so in front of
      audiences, I find it hard to not raise questions about golfers,
      synchronized swimmers or jockeys. Such questions are guaranteed to
      create glowering looks of pity at my obvious stupidity.

      Just now I stumbled across a program showing a conclave of Bass Anglers
      gathered in some poor unsuspecting lake. The announcers had no problem
      describing those grown up "good ol' boys" as athletes!

      With thinking like this, TV programming and the Presidential Election
      process becomes more understandable ... no less sad and tawdry, but more
      understandable. And I understand the appeal of crystal meth better!

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      Don Haines, PPA; PPSGW, WPPI,
      Don Haines Photography
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