‘It’s not your night’. Why did Jake LaMotta have to lose to Billy Fox in ’47?

Article first appeared on Gambling.com

June 14th 1960. A warm summer’s day in Washington DC. The air is sweet with the city grind and the hustle of a country racing toward adolescence and the associated rebellion.  Chatter spills from sidewalks, shoes are shined, a soft percussion to the chaotic jazz horn of taxicabs and the clatter of the capital’s iconic street cars. Morning sunshine glints from a mile of Buick chrome. 

This commercial idyll, stretching out beneath the blue sky of the star spangled dream belies the political tension that pulses under the skin of black and white America. It is a time of ideology too, the battle for civil rights, of JFK, Cuba, missiles and crusaders for truth and equality. 

Former Middleweight champion Jake LaMotta is in the capital. A face from the smoke and shadows of the monochrome America of the 1950s. One uncomfortable with technicolour progress and the dawn of an age more recognisable to us today.

Continue reading “‘It’s not your night’. Why did Jake LaMotta have to lose to Billy Fox in ’47?”

BW Archive – Farr: “Ali wouldn’t have hit Joe Louis on the bum with a handful of rice!”

First published August 29th 2008

Tommy Farr said that and who am I to argue? Tomorrow will mark the 71st anniversary of his courageous but ultimately unsuccessful attempt to dethrone the newly crowned heavyweight champion Joe Louis. The humble ‘Tonypandy Terror’ is long remembered for giving the legendary ‘Brown Bomber’ an arduous first defence of his heavyweight title and for the unflinching resolve he demonstrated in doing so.

His effort was as herculean as it was unexpected to ringside observers. Those hunched around the family wireless back in Britain, were moved to believe he’d done enough to topple the great champion.

Continue reading “BW Archive – Farr: “Ali wouldn’t have hit Joe Louis on the bum with a handful of rice!””

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