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Ice driving school / skidpad numbers

>Grip limits, oversteer, understeer, countersteer, left foot braking,
>hand brake turns, ... Yup, we learned it all and put it to good use
>at the Winter Driving School in Steamboat, CO. And what a good
>time it was! People came from all over, IL, IN, WA and CA to join
>the local CO folks in the white stuff.

Sounds like an awesome time! I wish I had the time to have gone..

>For all netters into the SUV discussion(please take it off line), a Ford
>explorer is MUCH more difficult to drive under these conditions than any
>quattro. A first hand account from a quattro owner who brought his explorer
>out for the fun. He retired it after a couple of encounters with the 
> and then stuck to the quattro.

I agree - take the discussion off line..

   I have a question however, about driving on say, snow, ice, or gravel,
and skidpad numbers.
   Am I correct in assuming that having a higher skidpad number will help
you on the ice to some degree? The example being the Ford Explorer vs. the
Quattro...The Q has a higher skidpad number, so is that why ( or one of the
reasons why ) it handles better? 
   Obviously, if you have racing slicks vs. studded snows, you will get a
difference also, but I am comparing the same sized tire, same kind, aspect
   But then again, you are still trying to wrap, say 4000 lbs around a
corner, and you only have a contact patch of a certain size... So you should
get the same amount of traction? 

   Just wonderin...