Outside Edge (25/10/09)
Sunday 25 October 2009
So Aussie Jessica Watson, 16, begins her attempt to break British 17-year-old Mike Perham's record as the youngest person to sail around the world solo. Well beat this, Sheila. Sail Chapman may have nothing to do with sailing but he has become the youngest to climb all 214 of "Wainwright's peaks" in the Lake District – aged five years and 22 days. He began at the age of two, and his brothers Eire, eight, and Evan, six, had achieved the feat a fortnight before. Sail appropriately finished on Sale Fell, his father David saying: "It's a joke really, it's only a grassy little hill." Surely a case of "competitive dad". Brother Coel, two, has just started his own attempt too. These lads are peaking far too early.
Cost of a Bugatti Veyron in 'Auto Trader' put up for sale by some bloke called Jenson Button. Black, only 1,500 miles, top speed 253mph: "two owners, second being a current Formula One driver" – at least it wasn't Nelson Piquet Jnr.
Old flames of the week
It's not just the young 'uns who deserve our praise. Roger Craddock clocks up his 52nd year with Reigate FC as he turns 70. He has had seven knee operations but on his birthday he buried a last-minute winner from the spot for the Sixth XI. Lee Whetter, by contrast, has been banned for life by St Austell FC after jumping into the stands Cantona-style to attack a fan after being sent off in a 4-3 defeat by Newquay. He should be put under the wing of Bosnia's coach Ciro Blazevic, 74, who fosters team spirit by making his players kiss one another. "I tell them they have to kiss each other straight on the lips," he said. What happens if they qualify for the World Cup, Edge shudders to think.
Good week for
Beth Tweddle, won her second World Championship gold medal, in the floor discipline... International Olympic Committee, granted observer status at the United Nations General Assembly... and ancient aborigines, according to author Peter McAllister in 'Manthropology', capable of running at 45kph if they had had spikes, faster than Usain Bolt.
Bad week for
Frankie Boyle of 'Mock the Week', condemned by the BBC Trust for saying that swimmer Rebecca Adlington looks like "someone who's looking at themselves in the back of a spoon"... Burnley Golf Club, whose sixth green has a two-foot wide crater, apparently created by a hand grenade... and rabbit-throwing contest cancelled in Waiau, New Zealand, after RSPCA said it gave children the wrong message (the rabbits are dead, by the way).
Wizard ideas of the week
Strange goings-on elsewhere in the world of football. Real Madrid shrugged off the claims of self-styled "warlock" Jose Pepe Ruz that he has laid an injury curse on Cristiano Ronaldo. But after Ron sustained a knee injury, Peruvian shamans with swords and maracas performed a cleansing ritual at the Spanish Embassy. Then AC Mantova in Italy's Serie B hired a Uruguayan witch doctor to sit next to their priest after seven straight defeats – and won their next match. And in Brazil, Viana led Chapadinha 2-0 but had to score nine goals in 10 minutes to win promotion on goal difference – and got them. As curses pour in from Viana's rivals Moto, Chapadinha just cannot defend their actions.
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