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VIVA! BUT HIDE YOUR WOMEN
Bob Ottum
May 15, 1967
Italy's Giacomo Agostini is the world motorcycle racing champion and a man to be admired, but you've had it, Antonio, if the girl friend yearns to run a fingertip over his magnificent mug
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May 15, 1967

Viva! But Hide Your Women

Italy's Giacomo Agostini is the world motorcycle racing champion and a man to be admired, but you've had it, Antonio, if the girl friend yearns to run a fingertip over his magnificent mug

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" Agostini, he mixes his own salad," he said importantly.

Agostini ordered wine, checked the label carefully, felt the bottle for temperature and then sipped it for taste. "Good," he said, rolling the wine and a little English around on his tongue. "You must drink it. But as for me—" he shrugged elaborately—"I cannot. It is sad. In the racing season I must not eat too much pasta and must drink—" he turned to his translator inquiringly.

"Poco," the man said.

Agostini nodded. "I must drink only a little wine, for I must stay healthy to race the motorbikes."' He leaned back and flashed the brilliant smile. "I weigh 65 kilos now, and my ideal racing weight is 63 kilos."

Agostini is 1.74 meters tall, or 5'7". He has hazel eyes and black hair that always looks sculptured. Surprisingly, he has all of his lingers and toes and his teeth are perfectly in line.

As Agostini dined, the manager began to lead parties to their tables on an involved route that took them past Giacomo, and they all looked at him with that wonderful Italian openness, and he looked back at them.

"You like miniskirts?" asked Agostini, pointing to a leggy girl who was being restrained from leaping on him only by the iron thread of chaperoned propriety. "On Italian women I don't like them. Italian women are not miniskirt women, they are women of the heart. But on English girls—" he made a circle with his thumb and forefinger—"yes! I spent three months in London last year, and the English girls, ahhhh. Lovely. I went to a special school there to learn to speak the English because one day I will race cars in America.

"It was after my third accident last year. I have three accidents a year for the last three years. This year, I hope maybe no. But...," he shrugged again. "Anyway, I had crashed in Germania with 150 kilometers to go. Only 150 kilos, and I hit this little spot of oil on the track. I went through the Plexiglas windscreen and I rolled very far, maybe 100 meters, over and over.

"I wanted to finish the race. But there was so much blood I could not. I had this long cut on my right ankle, here." He pointed it out and everyone in the restaurant leaned over and looked, nodding at each other seriously.

"They put my leg in—how you say?—a cast." He leaned back again. "So I rented this little flat in a building where there were many English girls who were—" He looked at the translator again.

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