As everyone knows by now, Parnelli raced into second place and a prize of $64,661. On the last lap he roared past the stands, grimly fighting a car that seemed to be bursting out of control. "Two morals here," explained Jones back in the garage. "You got to think positively. And when your car is running out of gas, you got to positively yank that blanker back and forth to slosh the remaining few drops into the engine."
THE WIN POOL
Thoroughbred trainers are generally agreed that the massaging action of water is good for a horse's legs. Now. thanks to a California trainer, Jack Clifford, and a swimming-pool contractor, Bill Kirkpatrick, there is a whirlpool bath for Thoroughbreds.
The bath, called the Winner-Whirl, is an outsize version of the hydrotherapy machines used by humans, except that there are 12 water jets in all, each aimed at a trouble spot on a horse's legs. Clifford has just finished testing the Winner-Whirl at San Francisco's Golden Gate Fields, a venue that attracts an ample supply of listless 3-year-olds and ancient claimers. In his first three times out after a few baths, Banco II, a 9-year-old claimer, got a win, a fourth and a second. A bad-acting 10-year-old, Blue G, unplaced in four months, came back with two seconds and a fourth. Among the 29 horses that were whirlpooled, there were, of course, some who disappointed. King's Patty, a 3-year-old also-ran, took 24 baths and apparently got nothing from it but clean legs.
Co-inventor Clifford does not claim that Winner-Whirl is a miracle machine. He has been in the game long enough to know that with horses it is blood, not water, that counts.
RACING AROUND THE CALENDAR
Having extended harness racing so that it now covers all but three weeks of the year, New York State legislators are now considering adding to the current 234 days of Thoroughbred racing.
There are already so many days of racing in New York that it is impossible for tracks to get enough respectable horses in the beginning and at the end of the season. These extensions will, we predict, result not only in a poorer quality of racing but in danger to jockeys and drivers, and discomforts for bettors. But it is the gluttony of the tax collector that regulates the game. If Herodotus were a New York racing fan, he might have written: "Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night can stay these bureaucrats in the swift extension of their greedy hands."
A SAILING YARN
The history of the America's Cup has been one of monotonous success. The defender of the cup, the New York Yacht Club, has loosely interpreted the rules from time to time, giving some misbegotten challengers a break so that the races would have a semblance of competitive equality. But now, faced with a second challenge from Australia, the club has gotten tough, placing an even stricter interpretation on the original rule that requires a challenging yacht to be constructed in its native country. As the NYYC now interprets it, a challenger may not even use a basic American-made material such as Dacron, the synthetic fiber from which the best sails are made. It would take the Australians almost as long to duplicate and weave Dacron properly as it would to grow their ship's timbers from seedlings. On this one technicality alone, the Aussies' chances are truly dim.