Jim Lea, slender former USC star who now does his running for U.S. Air Force, burst out of chute, didn't stop until he had set new world record of 0:45.8 for quarter mile in California Relays at Modesto. Other world record in same meet: 7:25.2 two-mile relay stint by Southern Pacific Association quartet of Jerome Walters, Hal Butler, Dan Schweikart, Bill Weiss (May 26).
Dale Long, slugging Pittsburgh first baseman, set pace for amazing Pirates, hit seven home runs in seven successive games, the last against Philadelphia (May 26), for new major league mark (see page 21).
Adios Harry, J. Howard Lyons' 5-year-old stallion, sidewheeled through mile-and-sixteenth in 2:07 1/5, sheared three-fifths of second off world standard while winning Henry Volo free-for-all pace at Rosecroft Raceway, Oxon Hill, Md. (May 25).
June 3, 1956
Don Yandle and Tom McDonald, quick-handed New Zealand sawyers, used six-foot M-toothed crosscut to slice up 18-inch white pine log in 10 seconds flat, claimed new world sawing record at Christchurch.
Pittsburgh's swarming Pirates made week's big news in National League. With Dale Long spraying home runs all over the place, Pirates split pair with St. Louis, swept two from Philadelphia, moved into third place, only one game from top. Milwaukee maintained fragile grip on first place but kept wary eye on Cardinals, who won five out of six, were second by 11 percentage points. Oddities of week: Cincinnati's Johnny Klippstein, Hershell Freeman and Joe Black held Braves hitless for 9 2/3 innings, yet lost 2-1 in 11th; Chicago's Jim Davis fanned four batters in one inning but was beaten by St. Louis 12-2.
New York rolled along at expense of Kansas City, Detroit and Baltimore in American League as muscled Mickey Mantle raised home run total to 17, batting average to .424, RBIs to 43, led slipping Cleveland (see page 40) by 3½ games, Boston by 5½. Chicago knocked over Baltimore 3-2 and won two from Indians to edge within half game of third place (for more facts and figures, see page 45).
Gene Fullmer, free-swinging mauler who raises minks in West Jordan, Utah when he isn't knocking over middleweight hopefuls, busily banged away at European Champion Charles Humez for 10 gory rounds in New York to earn decision and No. 1 ranking, prompting Manager Marv Jensen to clamor for title shot with Sugar Ray Robinson: "We won't settle for anything else."
Wayne Bethea, run-of-the-mill young heavyweight with only 15 pro fights but unawed by once-formidable reputation of fading 35-year-old Ezzard Charles, found over-the-hill ex-champion easy target, hammered out 10-round decision at St. Nick's in New York. His reflexes no longer sharp, Charles refused to entertain thoughts of retiring, insisted, "I'll go on as long as I feel good."
Johnny Summerlin, fifth-ranked heavyweight ignored by IBC until he managed to get "right connections," made long-awaited nationwide TV debut, hardly looked part of contender as he took decision from seventh-ranked Harold Carter in 10-rounder at Detroit.
TRACK & FIELD
Manhattan won only two events but scored 42½ points to retain IC4A championship in New York. Penn's Johnny Haines passed up defense of 100-yard title, outhustled Charley Jenkins to win 440 in 0:47.3, added 220-yard crown in 0:20.5 for first such double since Ray Barbuti turned trick in 1928. Pitt's Arnie Sowell outran Villanova's Ron Delany (who earlier won mile in 4:14.4) in 1:51.1 half mile.
Michigan came up to last event needing second to win, got it in mile relay to edge Iowa 41-37½ for Big Ten title at Minneapolis. Indiana's Greg Bell got off 25-foot 11-inch broad jump, world's longest this year.
Jerry Dutler, 27-year-old Mankato (Minn.) Teachers College student who bowled eight-game 1,690 series last April 30, finally got good news: his total was good enough to win $12,000 and solid gold championship belt as $152,064 Petersen Classic ended in Chicago.
Porterhouse, storming up from nowhere under frantic whipping of Jockey Ismael Valenzuela to challenge heavily favored Swaps, caught usually alert Willie Shoemaker cat napping, slipped home first by scant nose to take $109,800 Californian at Hollywood Park.
Alfred Gwynne Vanderbilt, intent on reducing racing stable, picked up $563,700 from sale of 33 Thoroughbreds in public auction at Belmont. Sometime Thing, bay 4-year-old filly with winning habit, brought fattest price: $100,000 from Construction Executive Whitney Stone for his Morven Stud.
Althea Gibson, smart-stroking New Yorker with one eye cocked toward Wimbledon, survived rough second set in Paris, beat England's Angela Mortimer 6-0, 12-10 for first time in five meetings to win French tournament. It was her seventh straight singles title, 13th of world tour (see page 20). Australia's Lew Hoad put his big game to work to overpower Sweden's Sven Davidson 6-4, 8-6, 6-3 in men's final.
Princeton's 150-pounders, unbeaten this spring, accepted invitation to send 11-man squad to England for Thames River Cup competition in Royal Henley Regatta July 4-7.
England's Stirling Moss teamed up with France's Jean Behra to zoom Maserati 616 miles around the N√ºrburgring course in 7:43.54.5, half minute ahead of Ferrari piloted by Argentina's Juan Manuel Fangio and Italy's Eugenio Castellotti.
Ch. Roadcoach Roadster, Mrs. Sidney K. Allman Jr.'s sprightly 27-month-old Dalmatian, expertly handled by Charley Meyer, outclassed 2,303 strutting canines, was named best-in-show at Morris and Essex Kennel Club show in Madison, N.J. (see page 52).
HONORED—Mrs. May Sutton Bundy, Holcombe Ward, Beals C. Wright, William J. Clothier, the late William A. Larned and Dwight F. Davis, U.S. champions from 1899 to 1911; elected to National Tennis Hall of Fame, at Newport, R.I.
DIED—Norman (Red) Strader, 53, college and pro football player and coach, last with San Francisco 49ers in 1955; of heart attack, at Berkeley, Calif.
DIED—Al Simmons, 53, one of baseball's greatest slugging outfielders, star of Philadelphia A's from 1924 to 1932, two-time American League batting champion (.381 in 1930, .390 in 1931), elected to Hall of Fame in 1953; of heart attack, at Milwaukee. Simmons had fierce hatred of pitchers, once said: "Hits are my bread and butter. They're trying to take the bread and butter out of my mouth. I hate them."