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Original Issue


Thundering down the greensward, muscles abulge, came last year's Mr. Universe, covering the 40 yards in 4.8. Not bad—but not so good that the Baltimore Colts could find room at fullback for Pennsylvania's Bill March who, despite the nine years he has devoted to weight lifting, says football has always been his "first love." On the strength of that and him, the Colts had invited Mr. U. to training camp but after a few days were obliged to cut him from the squad; he was 26 and had too much to learn, they said. Not put off, March announced he would look for work elsewhere in pro football. "I may be 26 and old for a rookie," he said, flexing his 18-inch biceps and expanding his 48-inch chest, "but my 26 years are not the average person's."

As far as doctors at Houston's Methodist Hospital were concerned, the choice was his, but tuba-sized Trumpeter Al Hirt righteously refused all invitations from friends to join them at the Astrodome. Having checked into the hospital to whittle away at his 330-pound bulk (below), Hirt argued that his willpower, not the strongest on earth, would be no match against "all the peanuts and beer and hot-dog smells around." So for two weeks he stuck steadfastly to water and vitamins and lost 50 pounds, and he'll return later this summer to surrender 50 more. But baseball remains on the outs. "Until I lose a full 100," said Hirt, "the temptations are just too great."

On a sort of nighttime shakedown cruise, Jerry Lewis' 65-foot, $350,000 cabin cruiser began to sort of shake apart about a mile off the northern California coast. With furniture floating around the various saloons, Lewis turned The Pussycat toward shore, anchored a quarter mile off the rocks and in the first light of dawn, along with four companions, made for land in a rubber raft. The raft capsized some 30 yards short of the mark, dumping all occupants into the 52° water, and his new plaything broke its mooring and was dashed to pieces. Still and all, said the owner of the café in Gorda, the tiny coastal town where everybody dried out, Mr. Lewis, while not wise-cracking, "was poised and well-contained. He was most businesslike, a perfect gentleman, and did not complain unduly."

"I'll just sit around awhile and let the smoke clear." said Rodger Ward optimistically last June as he wound up 20 years in the cockpit and bade goodby to auto racing. Then, somewhat prematurely, the two-time winner of the 500 climbed back into a convertible for a soapbox-derby parade in Indianapolis and perched high on the top of the seat. The driver, accountably flustered by the fame of her passenger, stomped first on the gas, reacted instantly by jamming on the power brakes and sent Ward sailing into the windshield. Brooded Ward, collarbone broken and trussed in a sling: "This is gonna hurt my golf game."

An insane quest for speed is running hydroplane racing into the ground, said Bandleader Guy Lombardo—who then indicted Guy Lombardo as one man to blame. Winner of 19 races in 1942 at speeds averaging 65 mph, Lombardo began to fit his boats with surplus aircraft engines after the war, by 1948 had won the Gold Cup and was pushing average speeds up toward 100 mph. And now, he says, unlimited hydroplane racing is not so much a sport as "a dog-eat-dog business with 2,000-horsepower engines and 200-mph straightaway speeds." Concluded Lombardo: if ther is any hope of restoring the sport and safety of old (and of preventing such tragedies as the four hydroplane deaths which have occurred in the last six weeks), horsepower and speed potential must be curtailed.

True to the form of bureaucratic planning, Earl Hines, on tour for the State Department, showed up for a concert in jazz-hungry Tbilisi, the capital of the Republic of Georgia, the same day a tight World Cup soccer match between Russia and Italy was being piped in from England by television. "The big hall was not exactly full," said "Fatha" Hines, but for those able to wrench themselves away from the tube and truck on down "the action was terrific."

Pulling their chins while searching for just the right man to complete a team of Common-wealth all-stars, officials of England's Hurlingham Polo Association settled, at length, for the husband of the Queen. Fine by me, said Prince Philip (below), and in October he will join the others for an international tournament in Argentina. Philip is the first member of the royal family to represent England in sport, and all insist that the basis of his selection was merit unsullied by sentiment. One is reminded that the man is a five-handicap player (10 is too good to be true), and, says a Hurlingham spokesman, "the Prince is in top form, he has been playing a very sound game lately, he is exceptionally strong, and his teamwork—one of the most important things—is first-rate."