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Ever since he began taking wheel chair excursions to a sun deck at Denver's Fitzsimons Army Hospital, President Eisenhower has been good-humoredly badgering his doctors for a vital piece of intelligence—the date on which he can expect to get his fresh air with a golf club in his hands. Last week the medical men gave him a solid commitment. When Ike gets back to his farmhouse at Gettysburg shortly before Thanksgiving he will have permission to putt on a practice green which the USGA and Washington friends are installing for him. "I'm going," the President said, "to become a very keen short-game artist."
Ike reaped other rewards during the week for the coolness and self-discipline with which he has made his fight against coronary thrombosis. He was allowed to begin walking at will in his room, and his diet was increased from 1,600 to 1,800 calories. Meanwhile the public got visual reassurance of the President's recovery—a smiling Page One photograph of Ike sitting in the sun outside his hospital suite, wearing red pajamas with an embroidered legend, "Much better, thanks," over his heart (see page 26). He was tanned and jaunty; in the words of one cameraman, "clear and bright as a button." Since these good tidings were well reported, and thus available even to horse players, it would seem shortsighted to conclude without touching on a corollary phenomenon which occurred some 2,000 miles east of the President's suite. Bettors allowed a 4-year-old named Fighting Ike to go off at 28 to 1 in the third race at Jamaica on Friday afternoon—a horrible mistake. Fighting Ike won, naturally, and paid $57.50.
WOODWARD'S LAST ACT
The death of William Woodward Jr. (see Mileposts), master of Belair Stud and owner of Nashua, brings to a tragic end the promising career of one of America's most popular and constructive young sportsmen.
Yet, obscured and overshadowed by the black headlines, was an act in which young Bill Woodward participated just a few days ago—one which reflects the same sort of enthusiasm for Thoroughbred racing that Woodward demonstrated in 1953, when, on the death of his father, he took over the management of one of turfdom's greatest stables. In his last act in behalf of U.S. racing, Woodward joined with a group of fellow sportsmen to buy Tulyar, the 6-year-old prize stallion of the Irish National Stud, from the Irish government.
Tulyar, once owned by the Aga Khan, represents foreign breeding—with its accent on stamina rather than sprint speed—at its best. When the Irish Stud paid the Aga Khan a record $700,000 for him in 1953 there was a furor in the Dail. One member moaned: "The people cry for milk, and the government gives them a horse." The purchase never quite ceased to be a political football, and recently the Irish let it be known that Tulyar was for sale. The American syndicate that bought him for $672,000 last week was headed by A. B. (Bull) Hancock of Kentucky's Claiborne Farm and included beside Bill Woodward such familiar racing names as Ogden Phipps, John Hertz and Harry Guggenheim.
The move that brings Tulyar to the U.S. is the latest and most dramatic example of the determined effort to strengthen Thoroughbred blood lines here. Among Tulyar's distinguished fellow immigrants in recent years have been Nasrullah, sire of Nashua, and Khaled, sire of Swaps. When the sale of Tulyar was announced the cries from across the Atlantic were loud and critical. Said Marcus Marsh, his former trainer: "It seems that America is buying all our good classic strains.... If it continues America will become No. 1 in the breeding industry."
Young Bill Woodward was doing his best—as his father had done before him—to make America No. 1 in the breeding industry. Two days before his death he gave SI his answer to overseas critics who complain that U.S. capital is destroying the British bloodstock industry. "Horse racing is big business and a big gamble," he said. "If we're in the business we want to be best at it." With typical Woodward enthusiasm he added: "I'm looking forward to the day when some Tulyars run in the Belair silks."
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