Special stakes race set for Shoemaker's finale
Santa Anita officials have scheduled a special $100,000 stakes race Feb. 3 for Bill Shoemaker's final ride.
The Arcadia, Calif., track announced that the race, called "The Legend's Last Ride," will be one mile on the turf for 4-year-olds and up. Shoemaker, 58, has won 8,841 races in a career covering six decades.
Shoemaker and his agent will choose his mount.
Nominations close Friday, with weights to be assigned Jan. 30. The race, with pari-mutuel betting, will be run as the fifth race on the program.
Shoemaker's final appearance required orchestration by track officials because the farewell date was preselected in order to be televised by ABC.
Shoemaker has been on a farewell tour that has taken him to three continents and 49 tracks. Shoemaker won Saturday's $50,000 Hallandale Handicap at Gulfstream Park on Beau Genius, his final race on the East Coast.
LaSalle's Simmons named MAAC's player of week
Lionel Simmons, who averaged 27.5 points and 11 rebounds in two La Salle victories, has been named the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference player of the week. Siena's Lee Matthews was named the league's rookie of the week.
Simmons, a senior forward, scored 27 points and grabbed 11 rebounds in 17th-ranked La Salle's 89-77 win over Canisius last week at Philadelphia. He had 28 points and another 11 rebounds Saturday in a 84-81 victory over Holy Cross. LaSalle plays Niagara Thursday at 7:30 p.m. at the Niagara Falls Convention Center.
Matthews, a 6-7 freshman forward-center, averaged 12 points and 8.7 rebounds in three games for Siena. He had 11 points and 10 rebounds in a loss at Fordham, then had a total of 25 points and 16 rebounds in consecutive Siena wins over Iona and Fairfield.
Sheehan struggles to 75, but wins Jamaica Classic
Patty Sheehan found a lot of trouble on the 6,191-yard, par-71 Tryall Club Course in Montego Bay, Jamaica, shooting a 4-over-par 75, but it was enough as she captured the LPGA Jamaica Classic by three strokes.
Sheehan began the day with a five-shot lead and won the 54-hole tournament with a 1-under 212 total. She earned the $75,000 first prize plus a bonus of $60,000.
Pat Bradley, Lynn Connelly and Jane Geddes tied for second at 215. Patty Rizzo and Muffin Spencer-Devlin were another stroke back at 216.
Zurbriggen closing in on fourth Cup overall title
Pirmin Zurbriggen of Switzerland took a big step toward a record-equaling fourth World Cup overall title by finishing 12th in the slalom, giving him first place in the two-day combined event at Kitzbuehel, Austria.
Zurbriggen finished third in Saturday's 50th Hahnenkamm downhill, a first-ever two-run event forced by poor snow conditions, and his aggregate results in the two events gave him the combined title and 210 points in the overall standing, 42 points ahead of Ole Kristian Furuseth of Norway.
Athletics group wants Johnson back on track
Primo Nebiolo, president of the International Amateur Athletic Federation, has called for a comeback to competition by Canadian sprinter Ben Johnson.
Johnson was stripped at this weekend's IAAF council meeting of his world records and the 1987 World Championships 100 meters gold medal.
Nebiolo told reporters: "We wish Johnson to be back."
He said whether Johnson can run again will depend on the Canadian athletic federation after Johnson's two-year suspension imposed by the IAAF for using banned anabolic steroids ends this September.
"If the Canadians will agree to give him (Johnson) permission, we would be very happy to see Johnson compete. . .," said Nebiolo, who attended a two-day meeting of the IAAF council in Tokyo.
The 28-year-old sprinter, who emigrated with his family from Jamaica to Canada in 1976, was stripped of his gold medal in the Seoul Olympic 100 meters after testing positive for the banned drug Stanozolol.
During the Tokyo meeting, the 23-member council decided to wipe out Johnson's three world records, in the 100 meters and the indoors 50 and 60 meters, as well as the women's indoor 50-meters mark held by his compatriot, Angela Issajenko.
Weaver's memory softens on disputes with Palmer
Earl Weaver, former manager of the Baltimore Orioles, and his Hall of Fame pitcher, Jim Palmer, often were at odds during their years together, but Weaver claims the incidents were overblown.
Said Weaver: "We'd go four, five, six days without talking to one another every now and then. But the problems I had with Palmer I had with anybody. It's in any employer-employee relationship. The difference is, when a stenographer gets mad at her boss and says a few words in the office, they don't get printed in the newspaper."
Elsewhere, Billy Martin, who died in a Christmas night auto accident in front of his country home, has left an estate legal papers say is worth less than $100,000. Records filed with the Broome County Surrogate's Court show Martin's will was filed this month and names his wife, Jilluann, as both his heir and executor.
Martin, who was 61 when he died, was riding in a pickup truck driven by William Reedy of Detroit when it went out of control and hit a culvert at Martin's farm near Binghamton.
Aivazoff's pair of goals leads to Amerks loss
Mike Aivazoff scored two goals to lead the New Haven Nighthawks to a 4-1 victory over the Rochester Americans in the American Hockey League. The Nighthawks have won three straight and four of their last five games. Francois Guay scored on a power play at 3:50 of the second period for the Amerks' only goal, stuffing a centering pass into the net. The Nighthawks put the game away with two power-play goals in the third period.
Around & About
An accident four miles from the finish line on the second day of the Monte Carlo rally in Monaco took the life of French driver Francis Malaussene and seriously injured co-driver Jean-Claude Bertaudiere. Race officials said Malaussene was killed on impact after his R5 GT Turbo spun out of control and slid 650 feet into a ravine on the approach to the finish line. . . . Brian Busch scored three goals and Chris Fess two as the Niagara Scenics beat the Melvindale (Mich.) Blades, 5-4, in a North American Junior Hockey League game. The Scenics had a 38-30 edge in shots on goal, as goaltender Bob Carello made 26 saves. The Scenics host Melvindale Saturday and Sunday at the West Seneca Recreation Center. . . . Yannick Noah, Henri Leconte, Guy Forget and Jean Fleurian were named to the French Davis Cup squad today to face Australia in a first round match on the grass courts at Perth, Australia on Feb. 2-4.
Buffalo State and the University at Buffalo wrap up road trips with games tonight.
The Bengals (15-0), ranked second in the nation in Division III, complete a stretch of 11 straight road games in Erie, Pa., with a game against Penn State-Behrend. Buffalo State romped over Oswego State, 84-50, Saturday night.
UB (8-5) completes a two-game Florida trip in Miami against Barry University. The Bulls lost to Florida Atlantic, 77-65, Saturday in Boca Raton.