McGann Makes Birdie Putt To Win Playoff

From Staff and Wire Reports

Michelle McGann made a 12-foot birdie putt on the third playoff hole Monday to win the LPGA’s Rail Classic for her third victory of the year and second in a playoff.

McGann, Laura Davies and Barb Whitehead completed 54 holes at 14-under-par 202 on the 6,403-yard Rail Golf Club course at Springfield, Ill.

Davies holed a 25-foot bunker shot for birdie on the 54th hole to complete a six-under 66 and she was the first player in the clubhouse at 202.

Whitehead, one of seven players tied for the lead after the second round, missed a nine-foot-birdie putt on the final hole and finished with a 68.


McGann, another of the second-round leaders, had a one-shot lead until making a bogey on No. 17 on the way to a closing 68.

McGann’s fifth victory in the last two years was worth $86,250 and brought her earnings for the year to $429,581.

Drag Racing

John Force clinched his sixth NHRA Winston Funny Car championship with a victory at the U.S. Nationals at Indianapolis Raceway Park at Clermont, Ind.


In other finals, Cory McClenathan won in Top Fuel, Kurt Johnson in Pro Stock and John Myers in Pro Stock Motorcycle at the 15th and largest event in the 1996 NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series.

Force, from Yorba Linda, beat Al Hofmann in the final. Force covered the quarter-mile in 5.139 seconds at 301.10 mph in a Pontiac Firebird for his record-tying 11th victory of the season.

McClenathan, from Anaheim, earned his second victory of the season by beating rookie Tony Schumacher. McClenathan finished at 4.734, 306.53. Schumacher finished at 5.742, 161.49.

Johnson, from Lawrenceville, Ga., edged Rickie Smith for his second victory of the season. He finished at 7.070, 195.14 in a Firebird. Smith trailed at 7.083, 195.01 in a Firebird.

Myers, from Birmingham, Ala., defeated rookie Matt Hines. Myers earned his third victory of the season after a run of 7.500, 174.96 on a Suzuki GSXR.


The Orlando Jackals won the Roller Hockey International championship by defeating the Anaheim Bullfrogs, 8-4, in the final game of the three-game series. . . . Streakin Flyer outran the filly Speedy Empress in the 440-yard, $2-million All American Futurity at Ruidoso Downs, N.M. The victory was worth $1 million to his owners, Janelle and Mike Green of Pelzer, S.C. . . . Three mothers are suing a gymnastics school in Virginia Beach, Va. , accusing coaches of forcing their daughters to compete while hurt, insulting them and using demeaning punishments.