BICYCLING—BERNARD THEVENET of France won his second Tour de France, pedaling down the Champs Elysées in pouring rain to reach the finish of the 4,100-kilometer race just 48 seconds ahead of Holland's Hennie Kuiper. It was the second-closest finish in the event's 64-year history. Belgian Eddy Merckx, the aging five-time champion, placed sixth.
BOATING—The way the Observation Trials for the America's Cup defense were going, any of the three competitors could ultimately wind up as the defender. At week's end Ted Turner's Courageous, which dominated the June Preliminary Trials, was 6-6 for July. Lowell North's Enterprise (7-3) suddenly was very much alive and so was Ted Hood's Independence (4-6), which took a pair of races from Enterprise one day and beat Courageous for the first time on another.
CANOEING—Britain's ALBERT KERR won the singles kayaking title at the world championship in Klagenfurt, Austria, but West Germany dominated the competition, taking five gold, five silver and two bronze medals.
GOLF—Twenty-three-year-old HOLLIS STACY shot a fourth-round 74 to finish with a four-over-par 292 and win the women's U.S. Open by two strokes over Nancy Lopez at the Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska, Minn. First place was worth $11,000 (page 45).
July 31, 1977
Lee Trevino won his first tournament in 14 months, a comfortable four-stroke victory in the $225,000 Canadian Open at the Glen Abbey Golf Club in Oakville, Ontario. Trevino shot 67-68-71-74—280 and won $45,000. Peter Oosterhuis was second.
HARNESS RACING—A 6-year-old stallion, DELFO ($22.60), became the first Italian-bred horse to win the International Trot at Roosevelt Raceway. Delfo led from start to finish, beating Bellino II by 1½ lengths and winning $100,000.
Big Towner ($3.60), driven by John Chapman, won the $254,200 Gold Rush at Monticello Raceway by a neck over Mistletoe Shalee. The winner paced the mile in 1:58[3/5].
HORSE RACING—GREAT CONTRACTOR ($19), carrying 112 pounds, beat three-time Horse of the Year Forego, carrying 137, by 11½ lengths in the $111,100 Brooklyn Handicap at Belmont Park. Angel Cordero Jr. rode Great Contractor, a 4-year-old son of Selari, who was clocked at 2:26[1/5] for the 1½ miles.
Affirmed ($2.80), Laffit Pincay in the saddle, finished seven lengths ahead of He's Dewan to easily win the $104,100 first division of the Hollywood Juvenile Championship at Hollywood Park. NOBLE BRONZE ($9.40), Sandy Hawley up, beat Little Reb by 2½ lengths to take the $105,350 second division of the test for 2-year-olds.
The minstrel, winner of this year's English and Irish Derbies, added Britain's richest horse race, the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot, to his growing list of victories. Lester Piggott guided Europe's top 3-year-old to a photo-finish triumph over Orange Bay.
SOCCER—The Toronto Metros and the St. Louis Stars are fighting it out for first place in the Northern Division—and they are battling in other ways, too. With 2:17 remaining and the Metros leading 1-0 on a Drago Vabec penalty kick, a bench-emptying brawl broke out in Toronto's Varsity Stadium. The game was called and the Metros 1-0 victory stands, pending a ruling from the NASL commissioner's office. After being shut out by Seattle's Tony Chursky 3-0, Rochester lost to Connecticut 2-0 to remain 14 points behind first-place Toronto in the only division without an above-.500 club. Fort Lauderdale topped Las Vegas 2-1 and then squashed the Sounders 3-0 to open up a 21-point Eastern lead over the comatose Cosmos. The Strikers, who boast the best record (17-6) in the league, also feature the NASL's top rookie, 23-year-old George Nanchoff. Converted from defense to forward 6½ weeks ago, Nanchoff has eight goals and six assists in 10 games in his new position. Dallas' Kenny Cooper lowered his goals-against average to 0.84 with a 3-0 whitewashing of Vancouver, his second straight shutout and eighth of the season. Team Hawaii set a league record by taking 45 shots against Los Angeles and converted on six of them (to the Aztecs' five). Peter Nover, whom Hawaii briefly put on waivers and then reclaimed, picked up his fourth and fifth goals in the four games he has played since then.
TENNIS—Wimbledon rematches continued to enliven things in World Team Tennis. On Wednesday, Cleveland beat Indiana 31-18 as Bjorn Borg scored a 7-5 win over Vitas Gerulaitis, his rival in that Greatest Match Ever Played. Three nights later the Loves dropped the Nets 28-20 as Gerulaitis came out on top 6-2, snapping Borg's winning streak at 11. Recalling their Wimbledon final, New York's Virginia Wade outplayed Sea-Port's Betty Stove 6-2 as the Apples clobbered the Cascades 31-14. But New York (27-9) couldn't overtake Boston (26-6) for first place in the East because the Lobsters' ace doubles team, Martina Navratilova and Greer Stevens, beat Wade and Billie Jean King 6-4 to clinch a 24-21 Lobster victory. Phoenix stretched its Western lead to 5 games as Chris Evert won all four of her matches to maintain her league-leading winning percentage of .617. San Diego lost two super tiebreakers to the lowly (9-27) Soviets, making the Friars a miserable 1-6 in super tiebreakers.
TRACK & FIELD—There were two notable upsets at Britain's Amateur Athletic Association Championships at London's Crystal Palace: DAVID BLACK took the 5,000 meter in 13:33.20, defeating world-record holder Dick Quax of New Zealand and Samson Kimombwa of Kenya. Yugoslavia's MILOVAN SAVIC overtook John Walker to win the 800 meters in 1:46.25. Britain's BRENDAN FOSTER won the 10,000 meters as expected. His time was 27:45.66, 15 seconds off Kimombwa's month-old record.
VOLLEYBALL—Denver's Larry Benecke set an IVA record with 18 stuff-blocks as the Comets squeezed past Santa Barbara 5-12, 8-12, 12-10, 12-4, 6-5. The Comets (12-5) then beat Orange County to run their home record to 9-0 and open up a 3½-game lead in the East. Led by the hard-hitting front line of Ed Skorek, Player-Coach Tom Read and John Zajec, El Paso/Juarez slipped by Orange County 10-12, 1-12, 12-10, 12-8, 6-3 and then beat the Spikers and the Phoenix Heat to reach the .500 mark. In the West, Santa Barbara topped Tucson 3-0 to gain undisputed first place.
MILEPOSTS—LOST: By Oakland Raider Defensive Back George Atkinson, a $2 million slander suit against Pittsburgh Steeler Coach Chuck Noll. Noll accused Atkinson of being part of the NFL's "criminal element" after the Raider back hit Steeler Receiver Lynn Swann from behind so hard that Swann suffered a concussion (page 10).
DIED: GEORGE MORTON LEVY, 89, founder and president of New York's Roosevelt Raceway and pioneer in big-city night harness racing. Levy, a criminal lawyer who once defended Lucky Luciano, opened Roosevelt under the lights in 1940 at a time when harness racing was strictly a daytime—and rural—sport. He introduced the mobile starting gate, eliminating false starts, and did away with time-consuming heats in ordinary races. Despite his advancing age, the dapper, cigar-smoking Levy continued to run Roosevelt, and he was at the track Monday, watching the races, when he suffered a heart attack. He died in a hospital later that night.