LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
MORE ABOUT BETTY
I ENJOYED READING THE article about Betty Skelton
but want to inform you that the statement that she
was the first woman to drive a Gold Cup boat is
inaccurate. Marion “Joe” Carstairs of Great Britain
not only drove but participated in a number of
Gold Cup boat races, including the Harmsworth
race. Three times, 1928, 1929, and 1930, she raced
against Gar Wood and his Miss Americas for the
trophy, but was never successful in defeating him.
IT WAS A PLEASURE to read the article on Betty Skelton in the
January issue. ... Betty and her husband, Don Frankman, were
instrumental in the founding of EAA Chapter 333, “The Flying
Stinkers.” The chapter’s base was the Frankman Ranchaero
airport near Ann Arbor, Michigan. Don was Chapter 333’s first
president. Later, EAA Chapter 333 moved operations to the
Ann Arbor Airport, where it resides today.
Don Kleinschmidt, EAA 329410, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Fred Honhart, EAA 763469, Lansing, Michigan
I REALLY ENJOYED YOUR article about Betty Skelton.
We saw her perform with Little Stinker at the 1949
Cleveland Air Races. I was interested to learn
about her many non-aviation accomplishments as
well. One thing your article didn’t mention is that
she preferred flying barefoot because it gave her a
better feel on the rudder pedals. She reportedly
almost froze her feet off when she set the altitude
record in that Piper Cub. Without a doubt, Betty
was one of the most accomplished (and prettiest)
aviators of all time and is well deserving of the
honor you have given her.
Don Smith, EAA 125038, Piqua, Ohio
Letters intended for publication should be addressed to EAA/Letter to the Editor, P.O. Box 3086, Oshkosh, WI, 54903, or e-mailed to
firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include your EAA number, city, and state. All letters are subject to editing. Unpublished letters will not be returned.