BASEBALL—Willie McCovey of the Giants and Johnny Bench of the Reds slugged the NATIONAL LEAGUE to a 9-3 win over the American League in the All-Star Game in Washington. Frank Howard and Bill Freehan hit homers for the losers (page 12).
BICYCLING—EDDY MERCKZ, 24, won the 56th annual Tour de France, pedaling the 2,556-mile distance in 116:16:01. He was the first Belgian to win in 30 years and the first contestant to win all three major categories: the general classification, the mountain prize and the green jersey—a symbol of consistency.
BOATING—Black-hulled DIAVOLO, a Columbia 50 sloop skippered by Peter Stern of Chicago, won the Class A and overall titles in the Port Huron-to-Mackinac-Island yacht race, on a corrected time of 48:29:17, as WINDIGO, a Grand Rapids entry, crossed the finish line first among the 200 starters. Don Snyder's FLYING JENNY of Port Huron and Bud Greiner's GRETCH II of Grosse Pointe won the Class B and C titles in the often-becalmed 235-mile race.
Frenchman JEAN-MARIE GUILLOU captured the 5.5-meter world yachting championships when he took first place in the seventh race at Sandhem, Sweden. Charles Shumway of Providence, who led in points after the sixth race, dropped out before the final event and lost his bid for the honors.
Thor H. Ramsing of Greenwich, Conn., sailing his 50-foot sloop SOLUTION, won the 42nd annual Edgartown Yacht Club Regatta off Martha's Vineyard. It was the regatta that brought Senator Edward Kennedy and his nephew Joseph to the island on the weekend that Mary Jo Kopechne was drowned. The Senator's boat, Victura, finished in ninth place in its class.
HARNESS RACING—According to Del Insko, who drove OVERCALL ($2.80) to first place by a head over Nardin's Byrd in the $25,000 Margaret Lloyds Memorial Pace at Roosevelt Raceway, "the finish came just in time," as Hodgen Special, Rum Customer and finally Nardin's Byrd made unsuccessful attempts to pass the season's best pacer. In his 11th straight win, which fattened his career earnings to $578,048, Overcall was clocked over the mile in a fast 1:59.
HORSE RACING—In the $117,280 Sorority at Monmouth, the season's first $100,000-plus race for 2-year-old fillies, 13 skittery entries jostled their way through the six-furlong race, as Jacinto Vasquez, one of the four jockeys flown in by helicopter from New York, guided BOX THE COMPASS ($8.20) to a one-length victory over Royal Crisis. Two foul claims were disallowed.
In the $58,300 Tidal Handicap at Aqueduct, gelding FORT MARCY ($7.20), with Manuel Ycaza up, overtook the pacesetter, Baitman, on the outside and won the mile-and-an-eighth race by half a length, with favored Hawaii third in a field of eight. It was Fort Marcy's fourth victory in eight races and boosted his season's earnings to $177,595.
Christiana Stable's Pit Bunny, who crossed the finish of the $59,950 Delaware Oaks at Delaware Park 1� lengths in front of King Ranch's GALLANT BLOOM ($3.40), was put down to second place when the foul claim lodged by Jockey Johnny Rotz on the runner-up was upheld, Shuvee, expected to pose a threat to Gallant Bloom in the 1?-mile running, straggled in fourth.
Park Top ($4.50), owned by the Duke of Devonshire and ridden by Lester Piggott, surged past the pack in the stretch of the $110,000 King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot, finishing 1� lengths ahead of Crozier. The bay, co-favorite in a field of nine, is the second mare to win this prestigious 1�-mile event.