On June 23 the eighth biennial running of the Annapolis-to-Bermuda ocean sailing race began. There were 50 entries and approximately 350 local men and women (and two children under 12) involved as crews. They, of course, left husbands, wives, sweethearts and children on the local beaches, all of whom presumably had cares and concerns about their loved ones' well-being and standing in the race. I am offended that your paper didn't even acknowledge the existence of this classic event.

Yet Angus Phillips did write extensively about the Newport-Bermuda race {Sports, June 24}, perhaps because he was given a berth on Jack King's multimillion-dollar new racing machine. But even that article contained inaccuracies. In the fourth paragraph, Phillips stated that King took third place in the "700-mile-plus" Newport to Bermuda race. As a navigator in two Newport-to-Bermuda races, I can advise you that this race is 635 nautical miles. Phillips compounded the inaccuracy later by referring to the "37th running of the East Coast's oldest, longest and most revered ocean race." The Annapolis-to-Bermuda race is 753 miles -- 118 miles longer than Phillips's darling from Newport.

Phillips also missed the boat by failing to pick up on the fact that a famous former Marine, Oliver North, was a crew member on his equally famous attorney's boat, Confrontation, in the Annapolis-to-Bermuda race. Incidentally, they placed third in Class III.

Come to think of it, that might have made a pretty good newspaper story.

-- Arthur A. Birney