- June 2 down the years
Schumacher reigns in Spain
Michael Schumacher's first race win in a Ferrari. In driving rain, he won the Spanish Grand Prix for the second year in a row. Damon Hill started on pole, then drove into a wall early on. But he took the drivers' title from Schumacher that season, and Ferrari had to wait until 2000 to win it.
Gavin Hastings took it out on the little guys. He scored a record number of points against Ivory Coast on May 26 1995, another 31 against Tonga four days later, and broke a world record today. It was an ersatz record, if truth be told. The International Board disregarded 'minor' countries at the time, including France's matches against Italy. But anyway, here was our Gav chalking up one of his big World Cup totals. Scotland beat Romania 55-28 and Hastings scored 27 points to break the 'world' record which was equalled on May 27. He'd scored 20 against Zimbabwe three days before, including eight conversions - and now he kicked another eight and added two tries and a penalty. Romania scored three tries, including two by flanker Florica Murariu, and Dumitru Alexandru kicked 14 points. Hastings's brother Scott went off injured after only a minute and couldn't play in the quarter-final defeat by hosts New Zealand. Gavin scored only three points in that match. His 27 today lasted less than two hours as a world record before it was broken...
.....by Didier Camberabero in the same group. His 30 points against Zimbabwe would be worth 33 today, and he equalled the national record of nine conversions set by his own dad on March 26 1967. France won 70-12, and scrum-half Rodolphe Modin scored three of their 13 tries in his only international match.
Johnny Weissmuller was born Johann Weissmüller in Romania and emigrated to the USA four years later. The most famous Tarzan in Hollywood spent a fair amount of screen time diving into croc-infested rivers and his local lake - so he felt at home. This was the most famous swimmer of all time. The fastest freestyler of his and the next generation, he won five Olympic golds. After the 100 and 400 metres in 1924, he retained the 100 four years later, and anchored the teams that set two world records in the 4x200. He was years ahead of his time. In setting his first world record at the 100 free, he became the first swimmer to break the one-minute barrier (July 9 1922) - in a 100 yard pool, of all things. He reduced that 58.6 to 57.4, which wasn't broken for ten years (March 2 1934). In the 200 freestyle, Weissmuller was world record holder from 1922 to 1935, and he was the first to swim 400 metres in less than five minutes (March 6 1923). But he never said 'Me Tarzan, you Jane'.
Annika Sörenstam retained the US Open. The only woman to win ten golf Majors, she started with these two. The previous year, she came from five strokes behind to snatch the title. Today she shot 66 to finish with an eight under par 272 and win by six strokes from Kris Tschetter. Sörenstam won the Open for the third time ten years later.
The only British player to win the men's singles at the French Championships. Clay wasn't Fred Perry's best surface, so he won the French only once. But he won it well, beating former champion Jack Crawford in the semi-final and defending champion Gottfried von Cramm in the Final. Perry played a steady game, not relying on his volley so much, and using his speed to cut down angles. Von Cramm produced a string of fast serves and crosscourt forehands, but he was having to go for winners to win points, and he made two many mistakes in the last two sets, which Perry won 6-1 6-3. Von Cramm had his revenge on June 1 the next year.
The women's Final in Paris was won by Hilde Sperling of Germany, who beat France's Simone Mathieu in straight sets. She beat her in the next two finals too (June 1).
In 1957, another British player won the French. In the final, Shirley Bloomer had no trouble with America's Dorothy Knode, beating her for the fourth time in a row. Bloomer was the tournament favourite after winning the Italian Championships, and she dominated the first set against Knode, concentrating hard in long rallies. She led 5-0 and won 6-1. The second set was tighter until Bloomer broke serve at 3-3 and won the last three games. She also won the doubles. In 1959 she married Chris Brasher, the Olympic steeplechase champion (November 29).
The men's singles in Paris was won by Sweden's Sven Davidson, who'd lost the last two Finals to top players Tony Trabert and Lew Hoad. Today he faced the less formidable Herbie Flam, whom he'd beaten in the tournament the previous year and was now suffering from a blister on his foot after three five-set matches. Davidson won in straight sets.
When Rod Laver won the French, he went on to take the Grand Slam: in 1969 and today in 1962
. In a final against the super fast Roy Emerson, Laver was two sets to one down at the interval, then 3-0 down in the fourth set. But he drew level immediately and won it 9-7, after which Emerson ran out of puff and lost the fifth 6-2.
The women's Final was also an all-Australian match. Margaret Smith, later Margaret Court, beat Leslie Turner 7-5 in the third. Like Emerson, Turner won the title the following year.
Vlodymyr Holubnichiy was born in the Ukraine and competed for the USSR. The most successful 20 kilometre walker of all time, he set two world records, the first when he was only 19, before making his name as a big-time competitor. He won medals in four consecutive Olympics: gold in 1960 and 1968 (October 14), silver in 1972, bronze in 1964. At the European Championships, he followed minor medals in 1962 and 1966 with gold at the age of 38 in 1974.