Ercole Baldini, piston-footed Italian, vigorously pedaled his bicycle around Milan's Vigorelli Stadium at 28.837 mph for new world record (Sept. 19) but will not be available to represent Italy in Olympics. Reason: his announced plan to turn professional Jan. 1.
Ted Allsopp, smart-strutting Australian, hot-footed 16 miles 401 yards two inches around dampish quarter-mile track in two hours at Melbourne to better world walking mark (Sept. 22).
Good Counsel, fastest 2-year-old in harness racing history, set two more world standards at Delaware, Ohio, pacing off mile in 2:01 2/5 and two heats in combined time of 4:04 1/5 (Sept. 19) day after Rhonda Hanover, A. C. Mudge's 2-year-old bay filly, trotted mile in 2:05, best ever for age, gait and sex, at same track.
September 30, 1956
Box Trade, durable 7-year-old, sprinted seldom-run half mile in rapid :45 3/5 at Cleveland's Cranwood track to break 16-year-old U.S. turf record (Sept. 18).
Milwaukee and Brooklyn, going right down to wire in bitter National League race, were still neck-and-neck as season entered final week. Braves, after slipping against New York, Pittsburgh and Chicago, pulled themselves up by bootstraps on Bill Bruton's first grand slam homer to beat Cubs 7-4, tentatively held first place by mere percentage point as Dodgers, beaten two straight by aroused Pittsburgh, led Pirates 8-3 in ninth of Sunday game suspended by curfew, prepared to sew up victory Monday night. Cincinnati, back in home run business, went off on six-game winning kick but were three behind in lost column with time running out.
New York Yankees, with seventh American League pennant in eight years safely tucked away, turned interest to Mickey Mantle's battle for triple crown. Mantle snapped out of slump to hit 50th and 51st home runs, giving Yankees new American League team record of 183 (later raised to 184), outhit Boston's Ted Williams in face-to-face combat to regain batting lead, .356 to .350, led Detroit's Al Kaline in RBI, 127 to 123.
Nashville, promising Llangollen 2-year-old with 6-pound pull in weights, outran unbeaten Bold Ruler, who bled from mouth after starting-gate bump in first race since June, by length and quarter in six-furlongs at Belmont.
Our Joy, Cary C. Boshamer's spirited 2-year-old colt, stepping out of allowance class for first time, moved boldly at last turn, was off and running to whip highly touted California Kid by solid two lengths in $31,600 World's Playground Stakes at Atlantic City.
Jockey Pete Anderson booted home Ghan Fleet and Pester at Belmont, gave 84 happy bettors, including superdelirious four who held $10 tickets, whopping $2,121 daily double, biggest payoff in six years.
Syracuse set tone for opening weekend upsets, shocking Maryland 26-12 but shared honors with SMU, which burst Notre Dame bubble 19-13, and South Carolina, 7-0 victor over Duke for first time in 25 years. In other games: Pitt, tabbed No. 1 in East by some, eased past fumbling West Virginia 14-13; Georgia Tech beat Kentucky 14-6; North Carolina State spoiled Jim Tatum's North Carolina debut 26-6; Oregon State defeated Missouri 19-13 after longtime (19 years) Missouri Coach Don Faurot, inventor of split-T, revealed he would retire to athletic director's chair at end of season; UCLA outscored Utah 13-7; Baylor barely beat California 7-6; USC trounced Texas 44-20 (for other football news, see page 52).
Lou Little, gravel-voiced perfectionist who will turn 65 next December, reluctantly announced his mandatory retirement (because of age) at end of 1956 season after 27 years as head coach at Columbia.
Gene Fullmer, mauling No. 1 middleweight challenger, marking time while waiting for Sugar Ray Robinson to come to terms with Jim Norris for title bout, gave home town fans glimpse of his freewheeling power, dumping faded Moses Ward to canvas four times before putting him there to stay in third round at West Jordan, Utah.
Kenny Lane, sixth-ranked lightweight managed by manipulating Jack Kearns, switch-hit Ludwig Lightburn into confusion, punched out 10-round decision before sparse gathering of 1,125 who turned out for opening of Major W. H. Peeples' Norris-sponsored Biscayne Arena at Miami.
New York's Julius Helfand, back at old hoodlum-fighting stand after momentary deviation, indefinitely suspended ex-Lightweight Champion Paddy De Marco, who used his head to make butting an art, for conduct detrimental to boxing. Helfand's charge: De Marco had permitted ex-convict James Napoli, alias Jimmy Knapp, a lifelong friend, to act as his undercover manager in Los Angeles last February.
Alfred Klein, hard-hitting commissioner who has done good job of ferreting out racketeers in Pennsylvania, will get opportunity to try it on national scale. Klein has been named head of nine-man NBA investigating committee "charged with the responsibility of policing boxing."
TRACK AND FIELD
Harold Connolly, Boston AA weightman, whirled 16-pound hammer 215 feet 4 inches in New York to surpass own listed U.S. record by six feet but was still one foot short of pending mark set by Olympic Teammate Cliff Blair earlier in year.
Dave Rhoads of San Jose, Calif. survived bad spill, bounced back to outpedal Olympic Speed Skater Art Longsjo to win 125-mile bike race and spot on U.S. team at San Francisco. Other qualifiers: Longsjo, Sprint Racers Jim Rossi of Chicago, Don Ferguson of Hollywood, Calif.
John Greer of Greenwich, Conn. was named playing manager of Melbourne-bound U.S. field hockey team after six 25-minute matches on rain-drenched Greenwich Academy Field. His squad: 1948 holdovers Harry Marcoplos and Bill Stude of Baltimore, Kurt Orban of North Jersey and Felix Ucko of New York; Jim Jongeneel, Herman Van Nouhuys and Hidde Leegstra of Westchester; Kurt Ucko of New York; Hank Clifford and Stan Harris of Rye, N.Y.; John Rote of Greenwich; Ray Whittlesburger and Bob Shanks of Baltimore; Newbold Black of Philadelphia; Gerry Kruize of Metropolitan.
MARRIED—Don Cherry, 32, versatile golfer-crooner, two-time U.S. Walker Cup player, 1953 Canadian Amateur champion; and Sharon Kay Ritchie, 19, Miss America of 1956; both for first time; at Denver.
LOST—Tommy Gastall, 23, promising Baltimore Oriole bonus (reported $40,000) catcher, former Boston U. baseball, basketball and football captain; when plane went down during solo flight from Baltimore's Harbor Field.
DIED—Jesse Niles (Powder) Tannehill, 82, oldtime major league pitcher (1894-1911), six-time 20-game winner with Pittsburgh and Boston Red Sox; of stroke, at Dayton, Ky. Master of tantalizing slow curve, Tannehill had 195-118 lifetime record, hurled no-hitter against White Sox in 1904.