1) Leeds face Manchester City in the Premier League on Saturday in the clubs’ first top-flight meeting since 2004. But let’s go back further in time to 1978 and a rip-roaring FA Cup third-round clash, featuring a blatant penalty not being given (when men were men, etc) and Gordon McQueen (Leeds) belting goalkeeper David Harvey (Leeds) in the face. These days, Stockley Park would be going into meltdown at the sight of all that.
2) Cycling is the most beautiful sport in the world, so they tell us. It certainly has a decent backdrop when it takes place somewhere like Emilia-Romagna in northern Italy. There was a perfectly-captured helicopter shot during the World Championships in Imola last Saturday as lone escapee Anna van der Breggen, of the Netherland, was pictured riding to yet another world title.
By attacking in exactly the same place on the course, and soloing to victory, Julian Alaphilippe of France provided the same spectacle in the men’s race on Sunday. Cycling is rarely short of beauty shots: check out the Col de Turini, and the sun-kissed Roche de Solutré in Burgundy wine country at the Tour de France, a stage to Sestriere at the 2015 Giro d’Italia won by Fabio Aru and featuring Alberto Contador, and a mountainous stage from last year’s Vuelta a España. And who could forget the Parc Naturel des Hautes Fagnes in Belgium?
3) The Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe is the world’s most glamorous Flat race, the true test of middle-distanced horses of all ages. This year, of course, will be rather different with just 1,000 spectators allowed into Longchamp. Enable is favourite, as she was last year, when narrowly failing to win a third Arc when being overtaken by Waldgeist, having won in 2017 and 2018. Should she and Frankie Dettori be successful then Enable would become the greatest Arc horse of all time, surpassing modern greats like Treve, winner in 2013 and 2014, and single winners like Zarkava, Sea The Stars, Montjeu and going further back, Dancing Brave in 1986.
4) It is 20 years to the day since Félix “Big Kid” Savón became only the third boxer in Olympic history to win three gold medals. Here’s a right old tear-up against Sultan Ibragimov of Russia in the heavyweight boxing final at the 2000 Olympics in Sydney. Here he is winning the 1996 final against Canada’s David Defiagbon, too, and for good measure here is his first gold-medal triumph at the Barcelona Olympics in 1992.
5) In the Indian Premier League, Nicholas Pooran’s gravity-defying save might be the best six-saving piece of fielding we’ve ever seen:
6) Read up on how they made the bobsleigh classic Cool Runnings here (incidentally, it’s one of Michael Owen’s favourite films) and then watch the official Olympic channel’s video feature on the evolution of the sport. Here is the famous Jamaican team’s debut at the Calgary Olympics in 1988 that inspired one of Owen’s favourite flicks.
Our favourites from last week:
1) In a closely-fought sprint race? Make a dive for the line!
2) The late Australian batsman Dean Jones destroys England at the Gabba in 1990.
Spotters’ badges: BlackCaeser, whobroughtoranges …
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