In view of the estimated migration to Europe, I'm not at all sure there will be room over there to swing a cricket bat without cracking four overseas visitors in the occipital bone. On the outside chance that the tracks and fields will be cleared of tents pitched by a Happy Holiday Tour that somehow got its reservations fouled, my specializing cohorts and I have sewn together a small compendium of a few sports events worth seeing. Also a few things to remember.
For instance: A letter from your golf club back home may give you the privilege of playing the Old Course of St. Andrew's Royal and Ancient Golf Club. However, those who fail to follow the suggestions of its royal and ancient caddies have occasioned a bag-toter to drop clubs in mid-fairway and stalk off the links.
At the race track both England and Ireland make use of the tic-tac man, a white-gloved eavesdropper who wanders among the crowd sampling the odds, then passing the signal back to the bookie by scratching an ear or stroking his nose. It is public sport to "market the odds," that is to place a bet with a bookie before he has caught the tic-tac's signal and dropped the odds. Eire's Galway Races are nominally a two-day meeting, but tinkers and gypsy caravans roll in for 50 miles around and the sideshows and carnivals throw the county into a week-long holiday spin. The Royal Ascot in England, on the other hand, is elegant and social.
The big bullfight season will be on in Spain (reversing the Mexican season), and you can buy tickets through the hotel concierge or at travel agencies at only a slight advance. Specify sombra in preference to sol unless you want to sit with the sun in your eyes all afternoon.
June 5, 1955
Royal Tournament, London, 1-18; Ascot Gold Cup, 16; Lawn Tennis Championships, Wimbledon, 20-July 2; Henley Royal Regatta, 29-July 2.
Armed services in colorful competition; elegance and royal horses (bring your topper); for tennis lovers, Wimbledon needs no explanation; in rowing circles, Henley is considered the aristocrat of all races.
Gymkhana, Saumur Cavalry School, held during month; 24-Hour Grand Prix Sports Car Race, Le Mans, 11-12; Prix des Drags, Auteuil, 24.
Beautiful displays of horsemanship by France's topnotch cavalrymen; rugged display of endurance by the world's hottest sports cars; not a drag race, but horses at the fashionable track in Paris.
Joust of the Saracen, Arezzo, 5.
Medieval games in costume, with armored knights on horseback charging targets and engaging in some of the rough-and-tumble sports of those ungentle times.
Kiel Week, 19-26; Derby Week, Hamburg, 26-July 3.
A week of sailing races at famous former naval base; a week of horse races at West Germany's glittering port city.
International Crossbow Contest, Gossau, 10-12.
Wilhelm Tell stuff, old and new style, in an old-style Swiss setting.
Feast of Corpus Christi, 9; St. John's Bonfires, Alicante, 22-29; Cattle Fair, Burguete, 24.
Celebrations of great splendor all over the country; fiery festivities, fairs and bullfights; Basque pelota matches, regional dances and general fun in the Basque manner.
Royal Swedish Yacht Club Week, Sandhamn, 12-24; Grand Prix of Belgium Auto Race, Spa, 5.
The 125th anniversary of one of the world's great regattas; and for the car lover, a spectacular race in a beautiful watering place.
British Open, St. Andrews, 4-8; British Grand Prix Auto Race, Silverstone, 16; Goodwood Flat Race Meeting, 26-29.
The best of golf at the world's most famous course; the best of racing drivers in another auto classic; horses and a chance to beat the white-gloved tic-tac man.
International Grand Prix Auto Race, Rheims, 3; Tour de France Bicycle Race, Le Havre-Paris, 7-31; Bastille Day, 14.
More race cars on one of Europe's fastest road courses; bicycles are slower but the whole country turns out for this classic grind; as for Bastille Day, this is a festival you'll never forget.
Palio Horse Race and Flag Tossing, Siena, 2; Open Air Opera and Drama Festival, Verona, mid-July.
More medieval sport in an unparalleled setting; and in a setting even more ancient, the Roman Arena, something for the soul.
World Jumping Championship, Aachen, 1-10; Nurburgring Grand Prix, 31.
A horseman's classic with classic contenders; and the same goes for the fabulous auto race on Mercedes' home grounds.
Yodeling Festival, Fribourg, 2-3; International Fencing Tournament, Gstaad, 9-10; Summer Skiing, Jungfraujoch, mid-July.
Maybe it isn't sport, but it's fun and very Swiss; swordsmanship at its best; and if you want to cool off afterward, this type of skiing is hard to beat at any time.
Running of the bulls, Pamplona, 6-20; St. James's Fair, Valencia, 20-31.
Young bulls, young men, mixing it up in the streets; brave bulls, matadors, battles of flowers and all manner of gaiety in a fabled city.
Salzburg Festival, Aus., 24—Aug. 30.
In Mozart's birthplace, music you shouldn't miss.
Cowes Yachting Week, Isle of Wight; English National Sheep Dog Trials; Cricket Test Match, England vs. South Africa, London, 13, 15-18.
Sailing in style in famous waters, with races of every description and two Six-Meter highlights: the British-American Cup, and the New World vs. Old World Series; something for dog fanciers; and cricket that has all England on its ear, if you're lucky enough to get a ticket.
Pelota, France vs. Spain, Arcachon, 15; World Polo Championship, Deauville; Grand Prix Horse Race, Deauville, 28.
There's more to this than just a game, since this mingling of France and Spain provides lots of local color, too; and in the elegance of a foremost French seaside resort, the thrills, spills and skills of one of the world's most exciting contests as well as Europe's top horse-racing contenders.
German Track Championships, Frankfurt, 4-7; German Canoe Championships, Hanover, 5-7.
A resurgent city offers a glimpse of some resurgent track and fielders who might make history next year at Melbourne; and, for the wilderness fans, a look at canoeing in the European (and not unexciting) manner.
Grand Prix of Switzerland for Automobiles and Motorcycles; Berne, 20-21.
Two-wheelers as well as four-wheelers spinning up and down the hillsides surrounding Switzerland's quaint and lovely capital.
World Snipe Championship, Santander.
The world's largest sailboat class fights it out.
Dublin Horse Show, 2-6; Rally Viking, Norway.
One of the world's major equestrian events; and a 1,100 mile auto race all through Norway from the North Sea to the Arctic Circle.