To the editors:
Cecil Adams’s answer re clockwise, counterclockwise races [February 9] was a tad off, at least on human races (not the human race, HA!).
In 24-hour, 48-hour, 72-hour, 6-day races (human) on tracks, every so many hours, 4-6, the direction is reversed to spare the runners’ knees. Puts a lot of torque on the knees to go same direction constantly. This is meant to even up things.
The longer the race, the more crippled up we become anyway, so I hate to imagine how we would look if this weren’t done. To put it mildly, we walk funny after these events.
And, hey, I’m not making this up. Have done my share (well, not yet) of 24-hour, 48-hour, and 6-day races setting a few American and world records winding and unwinding around the track. Plan to resume such racing away from here when I move to Albuquerque in a matter of months.
Myra J. Linden
Key Biscayne, Florida
Cecil Adams replies:
Thanks, Myra. I’ll never generalize so blithely again.