Tee-off at the
cables last week were abuzz with reports that Britain's Prime Minister Harold
Macmillan was off to Scotland on a secret, high-priority mission. Its object:
some intense practice on the links to fit the chief executive of Great Britain
to take on his U.S. counterpart when the two meet in Washington later this
promptly rushed to the defense of their Prime Minister with the claim that his
game was already three to five strokes better than that of the American
President. "Mr. Macmillan's swing and style are very good and
orthodox," said one Highland pro. "His driving is a shade better than
his putting and he's steadier with his woods than his irons. He's not very good
in the bunkers either, but he has more fine shots than bad ones. He's got that
real old Scots swing."
In the U.S. a
patriot who knows both golf and international conflict—Frank Pace Jr., former
Secretary of the Army and now president of the International Golf
Association—announced himself ready to provide a suitable trophy for the winner
of whatever tournament play at the summit might be arranged.
the prospect of an international sporting event that might have proved second
only to the forthcoming America's Cup races in patriotically partisan interest
went up in the smoke of diplomatic duty when official spokesmen at Whitehall
and the White House announced that, what with conferences, official trips and
what not, there would probably be no time for golf during the Prime Minister's
U.S. visit. But the fact remained that Harold Macmillan had indeed spent a
pleasant day or two in Scotland playing golf.
Unlike that of
Ike, whose occasional well-earned tours on the golf course are the object of
constant comment by a captious and caustic American press, Macmillan's golf
goes virtually unnoticed in Britain's papers. The four rounds he played with
his genial wife, Lady Dorothy, last week at Perthshire's mountain-ringed
Glen-eagles marked the second time he has been able to play in a year, and only
two London papers even bothered to note them. Even the Macmillans'
fellow-golfers paid little attention. "You see," said the club pro,
"they were too busy playing themselves to notice the Prime
only a single secretary and one discreetly self-effacing security officer, the
British pair covered the 6,577-yard course four times in an average two and a
half hours with no more formal arrangements than a quick phone call to make
sure a good caddie was available. On the first round the Prime Minister beat
Lady Dorothy by nine strokes with an 86. During the next three rounds he shot
an 83, an 81 and a figure which his caddie tactfully described—after some
Macmillan moments in a sandtrap—as "around 87."
The final match,
though not at all likely to put the fear of British conquest into Ike, was
marked by one splendid moment of triumph when the Prime Minister sent a long,
sweet ball winging down the fairway at the difficult 421-yard ninth hole.
"Not a bad drive," said 64-year-old Harold Macmillan, "for an old
man bordering on 70."
How beautiful are
thy feet with shoes, O prince's daughter, sang wise (and susceptible) old King
Solomon some time ago. If the Russian fans at Leningrad last July did not sing
the same thing or something like it when Russian high jumpers eight times
topped the marks of the best jumpers in the U.S., they should have, for all the
Soviet jumpers, including Champion Yuri Stepanov (who leaped a record 7 feet 1⅛
inches), were wearing specially built-up shoes whose inch-thick sponge-rubber
soles sent them off the ground like springboards.