Other Sports

Sports briefs: Nov. 11

Horse racing

Three-time Grade I winner Zensational retiring to stud

Zensational, the first horse to win three consecutive Grade I sprint events, was retired from racing and will stand at Hill 'n' Dale Farms in Lexington.

"Zensational has all the ingredients to be a top class sire," said Bob Baffert, who added that multiple Eclipse Award winner Indian Blessing and Grade I winner Behaving Badly already are lined up.

Zensational, by Unbridled's Song out of the Claiborne mare Joke, won five of eight starts with career earnings of $669,300. His Grade I wins were in the Pat O'Brien Stakes, the Bing Crosby Stakes and the Triple Bend Handicap.

Zensational's stud fee will be $25,000.

■ All horses that ran in the Breeders' Cup have tested negative for illegal performance-enhancing drugs. The California Horse Racing Board said testing was completed Tuesday and all the samples came back clear from the UC Davis laboratory. The tests checked for more than 45 anabolic steroids and hundreds of other prohibited drugs.

■ Churchill Downs will give free general admission to all U.S. veterans and active military on Wednesday with proof of identification. Gates open at 11:30 a.m. and the 10-race card starts at 12:40 p.m.

Track and field

Bolt, Gay up for athlete of year award

Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt and Russian pole vaulter Yelena Isinbayeva are the leading contenders for the IAAF athlete of the year awards. Bolt set three world records last year at the Beijing Olympics and broke two of those marks — in the 100 and 200 meters — in August at the world championships in Berlin.

Isinbayeva broke her own world record by clearing 5.06 meters at the Weltklasse meet in Zurich in August. Her performance beat the mark of 5.05 she cleared at the Beijing Games a year earlier.

Lexington native Tyson Gay, Kenenisa Bekele, Steven Hooker and Andreas Thorkildsen also are in the running, as are Sanya Richards, Valerie Vili, Blanka Vlasic and Anita Wlodarczyk.

The winners will be announced on Nov. 22.

Tennis

Safin says Agassi should give back titles

Former No. 1-ranked Marat Safin said Andre Agassi should give his tennis titles back after confessing he tested positive for a banned substance during his career and lied about it to the ATP.

Agassi admitted in his autobiography Open that he used crystal meth in 1997 and failed a drug test, a result he says was thrown out after he lied by saying he "unwittingly" took the substance.

Safin, who will retire after this week's Paris Masters, said in an interview with L'Equipe newspaper on Tuesday that Agassi should "give his titles, his money and his Grand Slam titles" back.

"I'm not defending the ATP, but what he said put it in a delicate position," Safin said. "The ATP allowed him to win a lot of tournaments, a lot of money. It kept his secret. Why does he need to be so cruel with it?"

Agassi, who retired in 2006, won 60 titles, including eight Grand Slams, during his career. He recently said that he had to speak about his lies because he couldn't live with it anymore.

"If he is as fair play as he says he is, he has to go to the end," Safin said. "You know, the ATP has a bank account and he can give the money back if he wants."

obituaries

German goalkeeper Enke dies

A goalkeeper expected to play for Germany at the World Cup died after being hit by a train in what police suspect is a suicide. He was 32. Robert Enke played for the German club Hannover. Team president Martin Kind confirmed his death, and police later released a statement saying a man had been fatally struck by a train Tuesday night. The statement said the "first police indications are that it was a suicide."

"You expect many things, but not something like that," Kind said. "I do not know how and why it happened, but I do not think that it had anything to do with football."

Enke had been diagnosed with a bacterial stomach ailment and missed nine weeks before returning 11 days ago and playing two Bundesliga games. He had not been selected for Germany's exhibition games against Chile on Saturday and Ivory Coast on Wednesday. But Coach Joachim Loew had said Enke remained the leading candidate to be Germany's goalie at next year's World Cup in South Africa.

Enke played eight matches for Germany. After Jens Lehmann retired following the European Championship in 2008, Enke was promoted to No. 1 for Germany but was set back by a broken hand.

Basketball Hall of Famer Cervi dies

Al Cervi (SUR'-vee), a pro basketball star who coached the Syracuse Nationals to the 1955 NBA championship, died in Rochester, N.Y., at age 92. The 5-foot-11-inch Cervi was one of the strongest backcourt players of the 1940s and 1950s. Nicknamed "Digger," he was the 1947 National Basketball League scoring champion and MVP as a guard for the Rochester Royals.

He became a player-coach for the Syracuse Nationals in 1948, continuing in that role after the team joined the NBA. He retired as a player in 1953 but coached the Nats until 1957.

The Buffalo native was elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1985.

Swimming

UK's McGinnis earns SEC's weekly honor

Kentucky's Eric McGinnis was named the Southeastern Conference male swimmer of the week, the first such honor of the senior from Raleigh, N.C.'s career, and the first recognition for the Wildcats this season. McGinnis won the 50-freestyle in both of Kentucky's road dual meets against Virginia and Virginia Tech. His 19.98-second leadoff split in UK's win in the 200-free relay against Virginia is the top time in the nation this season.

Etc.

LPGA trio wins 3-Tour Challenge

Cristie Kerr shot 4-under 32 on the back nine to lead the LPGA to the win Tuesday in the Wendy's 3-Tour Challenge in Henderson, Nev. Kerr, Suzann Petterson and Natalie Gulbis combined for a 6 under on the final nine holes to win $300,000. Combined with their $100,000 purse from the opening nine, the women claimed the overall title. The Champions Tour team of Jay Haas, Nick Price and Fred Funk finished second with $330,000. The PGA Tour team of Stewart Cink, Fred Couples and Bubba Watson finished third in the made-for-TV event with $270,000. The event will air on Dec. 19-20 on ABC.

Rory McIlroy said he will join the PGA Tour next year with hopes of moving up in the world ranking. McIlroy, a 20-year-old from Northern Ireland, already is No. 17 in the world despite turning pro only two years ago. McIlroy made the cut in all four majors this year, tying for third at the PGA Championship in August.

Shaq's wife seeks divorce

Va'Shaundya O'Neal, the wife of Cleveland Cavaliers center Shaquille O'Neal, filed for legal separation with intent to divorce Monday in Los Angeles. She cited irreconcilable differences. She is seeking spousal and child support and full legal custody of the couple's four children. No monetary amounts were listed in the court filing. The O'Neals were married six years, 11 months.

The last word

As the PGA Tour nears its short off-season, Geoff Ogilvy had this to say about the break:

"Getting away from golf is good for you. It gets the grumps out of you."

  Comments