Publish date:



Had 4-year-old Sparky Sipolt known he was going to get kissed by a lady in public, he never would have taken up daredevil driving. His expression says it all: Yucch! Son of Louis Sipolt, a pit-crew member for Mario Andretti and A. J. Foyt, Sparky doesn't mind piloting a miniature Indy car at speeds up to 65 mph through obstacle courses and deliberate spins. But this stuff? Don't cry, Sparky. Miss Sparkplug Wrench will soon go back to kissing bigger kids, where she is more appreciated.

Muhammad Ali got $10,000 for boxing four two-round exhibitions at Boston Garden recently as a prelude to the Emile Griffith-Joe DeNucci fight. Less known, however, is that the abstemious Muslim picked up another piece of change—$900—for delivering a lecture at nearby Tufts University. His topic: "The Intoxication of Life."

As Comrade Tito laid on 21-gun salutes for still more visiting royalty—the British royal family, this time—there was nothing so red in all of Communist Yugoslavia as the face of one teen-age boy swimmer. His trunks came down in front of Princess Anne, attending a swimming meet at the Belgrade youth center. When the elastic-snapped, revealing a damp posterior, the young man tugged up the trunks. But down they slid again, and he fled in disorganized haste. It was all something of a letdown.

How soon they forget! Billy Cannon, now a dentist in Baton Rouge, won practically every national honor as an All-America halfback at LSU in the late '50s and led LSU to a national championship. Although he tries to be philosophical, it really struck a nerve when Dr. Cannon saw the location of his season tickets this year. "Tell me," he said to an LSU official, "what do you give someone who didn't win the Heisman Trophy?"

Clary Anderson, football coach at Montclair State (N.J.), used a secret play against C. W. Post—so secret that nine of his 11 players didn't know about it. The play was a kickoff return where one deep receiver laterals to the other. "If all the players had known about it," Anderson explains, "they'd have been looking around to see if the lateral was completed." As it was, five uninformed players made perfect blocks and the return went 94 yards for a touchdown.

That beautiful black-haired woman with violet eyes who has taken to haunting English rugby games is indeed Elizabeth Taylor. "I prefer rugby to soccer," she says. "I can follow it easier because it's more like American football, which I grew up on. And I enjoy the violence in rugby, except when they start biting each other's ears off."

"I made it!" he shouted into the phone. What Larry Capune had made was Miami Beach, the end of his epic journey by surfboard down the East Coast from Boston. Capune, who averaged more than 20 miles a day for the 2,544-mile trip, originally expected to complete it in September, but, as he explained last week, "There were storms, and I got lost a couple of times." There were no other mishaps, except for a fungus infection Capune got on his chest near Boca Raton, Fla. "Polluted water," he said.

The world record for racing the longest to nowhere has just been claimed by Peter Hallenbeck of Loudonville, N.Y. Hallenbeck walked down an up escalator for 14 consecutive hours.

A lot of statisticians and sports-writers were happy when the Kentucky Colonels released Walt Szczerbiak. The ex-George Washington U. player who was good enough to stick with the late Pittsburgh Condors, denies that his name was ever a problem for headlines—he never got any—but admits that it can be frightening. "You should have seen me in the first grade when I found out my name was spelled this way," Szczerbiak says. "Talk about panic."

Marge Peterson, wife of Houston Oiler Coach Bill Peterson, gets to see football in depth. Son David, 13, is a back at Dulles Junior High; Billy Jr., 16, is Dulles Senior High's best tackle; Johnny, 20, is a safety for Rice University. Mrs. Peterson's football week starts on Wednesday with a junior high game. Friday it is high school, Saturday college and Sunday the pros. "In that sequence it's probably more interesting than reversing the order," she says succinctly. Another son coaches at Madison (Fla.) High School. One of Mrs. Peterson's brothers coached the Alliance, Ohio school team for 25 years, and another was an assistant at Massillon, under Paul Brown. In fact, Brown was one of Marge's high school teachers. How does Mrs. Peterson feel about football now? "There are still a lot of things I don't understand about it," she says.

Ron Evans, of St. George Island, Md., winner of the Chesapeake Bay Oyster Shucking Contest for the second straight year, required 64.91 seconds to shuck his dozen bivalves this year, 9.91 seconds more than in 1971. Officials explained that this year the oysters are tougher and require more mussel.

The law looked the other way when Filmmaker A. S. Csaky staged a shoot-out at Annapolis, Md. for the movie Super Dude. Maryland has a new antigun law, and someone thought to ask Attorney General Francis Burch if the filmers were violating it by using a gun with a hollow chamber that cannot hold shells. Having the gun, he said, would be illegal unless a permit were obtained—and that takes 90 days. So Csaky appealed to the city council, which promised to ignore the law. Good thing, too The permit would have been denied: the prop gun had no serial number.