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AFTER having tried Springfield for two years, and it being found necessary to seek some other city offering greater accommodations, both as regards the course and hotels, New London and Saratoga seem to be the only places which promise to come up to the wishes and expectations of rowing men. In an article which appeared in the Magenta several weeks ago the writer strongly urges the selection of New London, giving various reasons for his preferring that place to Saratoga.
The primary object of the regatta is to test the merits of the crews, no crew having the slightest advantage over another as regards position, etc.; and this being the case, the first point sought after is a proper rowing course, irrespective of any and all other considerations. Now, the course at Saratoga is undoubtedly all that could be desired, while that at New London is rendered very doubtful by the probabilities of rough water, so that as far as the advantages for rowing are concerned there can be no choice between the two places. Indeed, the former place is regarded so highly by the best professional oarsmen that the English crews who rowed there in September, 1871, have recently signified their willingness to come to the United States again provided the regatta is held on Saratoga Lake. This in itself would seem to be conclusive testimony as to the merits of the course. The writer of the article, "Regatta Course," lays great stress on the fact that the only steamer in Saratoga is a "little tea-pot," similar to the one used at Springfield, and which, according to him, is incapable of keeping up with the crews; while at New London plenty of steamboats could be chartered to follow the contesting crews.
The truth is, that the tea-pot, with proper fuel, can attain a sufficient rate of speed to hold its own with the boats. Moreover, the Saratoga Club has promised to make good any deficiency which may exist in regard to facilities for Reporters and Judges. The race may be rowed towards the city, and therefore the finish will not be more than half an hour's walk from the hotels, while for those who wish to ride, great facilities will be offered. Another point is, that the Saratoga Club would arrange the details of the race, and then there would be no vexatious delays and mistakes, as this year at Springfield. As to hotel accommodations, Saratoga is unrivalled, forming a great contrast to New London, which with Norwich has at most three fair houses.
Handsome prizes will be offered, and the crews and their friends will without doubt, following the general rule, be unanimous in voting Saratoga Lake the best course in the United States, and the citizens of Saratoga the most amiable people to whose hospitality they were ever confided. It is true that the New England crews will have to travel somewhat farther, but this objection ought certainly to be overweighed by the superiority of the Saratoga course over that of New London.
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