Allmankind ready for fences at Warwick | Racing News


first_imgAllmankind is due to face five rivals in the two-mile contest, including Nicky Henderson’s Fred and the Nigel Twiston-Davies-trained Stolen Silver. “He was so mature and active as a three and four-year-old and one of the best of his age. The others have caught up a bit, and by going chasing we are hopefully finding some races he can win.“I had my mind made up to go over fences halfway up the run-in when he ran at Cheltenham the other day, and Tim Gredley (part-owner) said during the first lockdown that he couldn’t wait to go chasing.“It took a while to persuade the jockey (Harry Skelton), but we are all on the same page now.”- Advertisement – He finished only a fortunate third in the Triumph Hurdle at the Cheltenham in March, however – and after he was beaten as a short-priced favourite on his return to action at Prestbury Park last month, connections have decided to go down a different route.Trainer Dan Skelton said: “We’ve done plenty of jumping at home over fences with him, and he is good. Those erratic horses like him are the ones that do jump, because their brains are thinking.“He is a Grade One winner, and I don’t want to spend all year getting beaten with him over hurdles – it’s not good for the owners or the whole team, seeing him getting beaten a load of times.- Advertisement – High-class hurdler Allmankind kicks off his career over fences in the Stan Mellor Memorial Novices’ Chase at Warwick on Friday.Formerly trained on the Flat by Michael Bell, the son of Sea The Moon was thoroughly impressive in winning on his debut over obstacles at this venue 12 months ago – before going on to Grade Two and Grade One success at Cheltenham and Chepstow respectively.- Advertisement – – Advertisement –last_img read more

Viola Smith, ‘Fastest Girl Drummer in the World,’ Dies at 107


first_imgMs. Smith’s sisters gradually left the band to raise families or pursue other occupations, and with her remaining bandmate, Mildred, she formed a new all-female ensemble, billed as Frances Carroll (the frontwoman) and the Coquettes, which appeared on the cover of Billboard magazine and performed in a Warner Bros. musical short. Mildred eventually also got married, and Ms. Smith became the last sister standing. Viola Smith, who played a giant 12-piece drum kit and was billed as the “fastest girl drummer in the world” — and who wrote a widely read essay during World War II advocating for big bands to hire female musicians in place of the male ones who had been drafted — died on Oct. 21 at her home in Costa Mesa, Calif. She was 107.Her nephew Dennis confirmed her death.- Advertisement – Despite Ms. Smith’s impassioned argument, the big bands didn’t heed her calls for inclusion.Viola Clara Schmitz was born in Mount Calvary, Wis., on Nov. 29, 1912. Her father, Nicholas, ran a tavern and a dance hall and played cornet professionally. Her mother, Louise (Steffes) Schmitz, was a homemaker. She grew up in a musical household with nine siblings and attended a rural schoolhouse. No immediate family members survive.When Ms. Smith was 13, her father assigned her the drums in the family band, partly because all the other instruments were spoken for. The Schmitz Sisters Orchestra toured heavily and once participated in a radio battle with an all-male big band, performing Gershwin’s “Rhapsody in Blue.” The bright lights of New York, and the hot jazz coming out of the nightclubs on 52nd Street, called out to Ms. Smith, and she headed to the big city with her drumsticks. Opportunity abounded for her in New York. She studied timpani at the Juilliard School and played with the snare drum virtuoso Billy Gladstone at Radio City Music Hall. A young Frank Sinatra chatted her up one night at a chop house. She found a studio apartment in Midtown, where she ended up living for 70 years.She joined Phil Spitalny’s all-female Hour of Charm big band and stayed with the group for over a decade, appearing with them in the Abbott and Costello comedy “Here Come the Co-eds.” Ms. Smith also made several appearances on Ed Sullivan’s popular variety show and signed endorsement deals with Ludwig Drums and the Zildjian cymbal company.By the 1950s, the big-band era was coming to an end. A few years after performing on Broadway as a member of the Kit Kat Band in the original 1966 production of “Cabaret,” she retired. She spent the following years getting good at bridge and enjoying the wonders of a rent-regulated New York apartment.When Ms. Smith discovered much later that she was being hailed as a female pioneer of drumming, the news surprised her.“It’s all amazing to me what I see now on the internet,” she told Tom Tom, a drumming magazine, in 2013. “Everything comes as a great surprise. I’m very thankful that I’m accepted as a girl drummer because, one time, there was no such thing.” – Advertisement –center_img As the ranks of predominantly male big bands thinned out during the war, Ms. Smith published an editorial in DownBeat Magazine titled “Give Girl Musicians a Break!,” urging orchestras to hire the talented female musicians eager to fill the slots of the absent players.“Why not let the girls play in the big bands?” she wrote. “In these times of national emergency, many of the star instrumentalists of the big name bands are being drafted. Instead of replacing them with what may be mediocre talent, why not let some of the great girl musicians of the country take their places?”“There are many girl trumpet players, girl saxophonists and girl drummers who can stand the grind of long tours and exacting one-night stands,” she continued. “The idea of girls being able to play only legitimately is a worn-out myth now.”- Advertisement – Ms. Smith, who hailed from a little town in Wisconsin, grew up playing in a jazz band with her seven sisters. Her entrepreneurial father conceived of the group, the Schmitz Sisters Orchestra, and they performed at state fairs and toured the vaudeville circuit. After most of her sisters left the band, Ms. Smith started another all-female outfit, the Coquettes, which rose to modest national fame in the late 1930s.Ms. Smith became the first female star of jazz drumming. She performed at President Harry S. Truman’s inauguration gala, and she worked with Ella Fitzgerald and Chick Webb. Her showcase tune was a jazzy arabesque called “Snake Charmer,” in which she exhibited her virtuosity in a flashy solo. When people called her the “female Gene Krupa,” she corrected them: Krupa, she said, was the male Viola Smith. In 2012, Ms. Smith moved to Southern California, where she lived on a Christian commune in Costa Mesa, largely composed of older women, called the Piecemakers. The origins of the group, which operates a country store that sells homemade quilts and crafts, date to the 1960s.Earlier this year, the writer Emma Starer Gross visited Costa Mesa to interview Ms. Smith for The LAnd Magazine. Musing on her longevity, Ms. Smith said, “Maybe it’s the drums that have kept me spry, or the wine, or going to the casino.”The article described a trip Ms. Smith had taken a few years earlier to a Guitar Center with some Piecemaker friends to pick up musical equipment. A young woman helped them out, paying little notice to the petite centenarian. As it happened, Tom Tom magazine had recently run a piece about Ms. Smith, and that very issue was sitting on the shop’s counter.When the young employee started flipping through the magazine, and one of Ms. Smith’s friends casually mentioned the article, she quickly became star-struck.“You’re Viola Smith?” she said. “Every woman drummer knows who you are.” – Advertisement –last_img read more

Top Republicans Decline to Acknowledge Biden Win as Trump Refuses to Concede


first_imgPrivately, the president’s advisers, several of whom have quietly been candid that the chances of success in any challenge to the election outcome were not high, were grappling with how to get him to bow to the reality that he had lost. Those comments reflected the advice of some of Mr. Trump’s top advisers, chiefly Rudolph W. Giuliani, his personal lawyer, who were urging him on Sunday to continue to fight the results.A remarkably small number of Republicans called for the country to move on.“Though we have political differences, I know Joe Biden to be a good man, who has won his opportunity to lead and unify our country,” Mr. Bush said in a statement.In addition, three Republican governors of blue states — Charlie Baker of Massachusetts, Larry Hogan of Maryland and Phil Scott of Vermont — and at least seven House Republicans acknowledged Mr. Biden’s victory.They included the centrist Representatives Tom Reed of New York and Fred Upton of Michigan; Representative Adam Kinzinger of Illinois, who has been an outspoken critic of Mr. Trump; and four lawmakers who will not be returning to Congress next year: Representatives Paul Mitchell of Michigan, Will Hurd of Texas, and Francis Rooney of Florida, who are retiring, and Representative Denver Riggleman of Virginia, who lost his primary this year.Representative Don Young of Alaska, whose race remains undecided after a more difficult than expected re-election bid, said he wished “the president-elect well in what will no doubt be the most challenging chapter of his political career.”“It is time to put the election behind us, and come together to work for a better tomorrow for our nation,” Mr. Young said in a statement. “It’s time for the president’s lawyers to present the facts, and it’s time for those facts to speak for themselves,” Mr. Blunt, the chairman of the Rules Committee, said on ABC’s “This Week.” “It seems unlikely that any changes could be big enough to make a difference, but this is a close election, and we need to acknowledge that.”- Advertisement – Updated Nov. 8, 2020, 3:58 p.m. ET – Advertisement – Their reactions suggested that even in defeat, Mr. Trump maintained a powerful grip on his party and its elected leaders, who have spent four years tightly embracing him or quietly working to avoid offending him in a way that could alienate his loyal base. For many prominent Republicans, the president’s reluctance to accept the election results created a dilemma, making even the most cursory expression of support for Mr. Biden seem like a conspicuous break with Mr. Trump.Senator Roy Blunt of Missouri was the most senior Republican to suggest that Mr. Trump had lost and cast doubt on his allegations of a stolen election, but he stopped short of referring to Mr. Biden as the president-elect in an exceedingly careful television interview. On “Fox News Sunday,” Mr. Romney provided a contrast to many of his Republican colleagues. He said that he believed it was “appropriate” for Mr. Trump to pursue recounts and legal challenges in certain battleground states, but cautioned against widespread condemnations of the American system of elections.“It’s important for the cause of democracy and freedom that we don’t allege fraud and theft and so forth, unless there’s very clear evidence of that,” Mr. Romney said. “To date, that evidence has not been produced.”Mr. Romney noted that he had had a legal team ready to challenge the results of the 2012 election when he was the Republican nominee, but decided not to go forward once he saw such efforts would be futile.“At some point, truth, freedom and democracy have to ascend,” he said, “and you step aside.”Maggie Haberman and Peter Baker contributed reporting. “Why would you call the presidential race first?” he asked.Likewise, Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina urged Mr. Trump to refuse to concede and fight on. WASHINGTON — More than 24 hours after President-elect Joseph R. Biden Jr. was declared the winner of the election, the nation’s Republican leaders and scores of party lawmakers refrained on Sunday from acknowledging his victory, either remaining silent or encouraging President Trump to forge ahead with long-shot lawsuits to try to overturn the results of the election in battleground states.Even as some prominent figures in the party including its only living former president, George W. Bush, publicly congratulated Mr. Biden, the vast majority of Republicans declined to offer the customary statements of well wishes and support for the victor that have historically been standard in American presidential elections. Instead, they followed the lead of Mr. Trump, who has refused to concede and claimed that the election was stolen from him.- Advertisement – “Do not accept the media’s declaration of Biden,” Mr. Graham, the chairman of the Judiciary Committee, said on Fox News on Sunday morning. He called the election “contested” and urged: “Do not concede, Mr. President. Fight hard.” “I look forward,” Mr. Blunt added, “to the president dealing with this however he needs to deal with it.”At the White House, there was little indication that Mr. Trump was dealing with it at all. As he played a second consecutive day of golf at his private club outside Washington, the president recirculated a groundless claim by Newt Gingrich, the former Republican speaker of the House, who told Fox News, “I think that it is a corrupt, stolen election.” – Advertisement – On Friday, a large group of them met with the president in the Oval Office to discuss the way forward. After another meeting at Mr. Trump’s campaign headquarters on Saturday, where political aides laid out the small chances of changing the outcome of the race, Jared Kushner, the president’s senior adviser and son-in-law, asked the group to go to the White House to outline it for Mr. Trump, according to people briefed on the meeting.The silence from many leading Republicans cut both ways for the president. While it allowed Mr. Trump to continue the fiction that he had not lost, it also left him to battle against the election results without the full, vocal support of his party behind him. Senator Mitch McConnell, Republican of Kentucky, has declined to say anything since Friday, before the election results were known, when he released a generic statement encouraging officials to “count all the votes.” No member of his leadership team has either, apart from Mr. Blunt’s carefully worded statements on Sunday.At the same time, just two Republican members of the Senate — Mitt Romney of Utah and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska — and a handful of members of the House had acknowledged Mr. Biden’s win by Sunday afternoon, while others were trying to cast doubt on the results.“Every legal challenge should be heard,” said Representative Kevin McCarthy of California, the House minority leader. “Then and only then will America decide who won the race.”Speaking on Fox News, Mr. McCarthy questioned why news media outlets had called the presidential race for Mr. Biden, who was leading by tens of thousands of votes in key battleground states, before drawing a conclusion about undetermined contests in competitive House districts — many of those in deep-blue California and New York — where thousands of mail-in ballots remain uncounted.last_img read more

Save yourself the hassle. Give Biden full authority to fight the pandemic right now


first_imgTherefore, in making my suggestion, I won’t be repeating what I have said in the past about your being a malicious, reckless, feckless, fascist baboon, or referring to your Twitter account as pyroclastic excrement, or pointing to your stack of 22,000 lies, half-truths and fabrications, or making any reference to your statements about the coronavirus such as don’t wear a mask, drink bleach, kids can’t get it, it affects virtually nobody, vulnerable old people are going to die anyway, we’d have fewer cases if we didn’t test so much, the hospitals have all the protective gear they need.Talk like that just doesn’t seem very cooperative or healing, so without mentioning it, my suggestion is that you turn over the fight against the coronavirus to the team President-elect Joe Biden has established to provide scientific medical and logistical advice on how best to bring it under control. Not in January. Right now. Today.- Advertisement – The team is already picked. There’s already a Biden Plan to Combat Coronavirus (COVID-19) and Prepare for Future Global Health Threats that those advisers will hone. There are already plans to have regular virtual COVID-19 conferences with governors and their staffs weeks before Inauguration Day. Biden, Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, and aides close to to them actually want to fight the virus, which I know is hard for you to imagine. But getting somebody else to do the heavy lifting has always been a strong point with you, so this meshes perfectly with your skill set and your current desire to bring out the crowds. Just so I’m clear, by “turn over” I mean give the Biden team total authority over the national effort to get the pandemic under control. Unhesitatingly facilitate whatever they propose. Anything they think should be done that has to have your signature on it, you sign. You agree not to have press conferences contradicting their work. Any funding they need you can divert from building the border wall. Now I know your grasp on history is … uh … rusty, but you may be thinking that delegating authority like this is unorthodox, unprecedented. So it is. But you’ve already given us full four years of the unorthodox and unprecedented. And Bill Barr, well, he’ll go along with anything you want, just say “unitary executive” and you’re golden. – Advertisement – You also shouldn’t worry that putting the Biden team in charge like this would make you look weak and incompetent. The 240,000 dead Americans have already done that, with another 130,000 now projected to die by Jan. 21 without a change in policy. Ooops, sorry, I guess that wasn’t a very cooperative or healing thing to say. center_img – Advertisement –last_img read more

Kaitlyn Bristowe Responds to Carrie Ann Inaba’s ‘DWTS’ Judging


first_imgNo hard feelings. Kaitlyn Bristowe knows Carrie Ann Inaba‘s tough judging on Dancing With the Stars is coming from a good place — even though she doesn’t completely agree with it.The former Bachelorette, 35, and the choreographer, 52, haven’t seen eye to eye throughout season 29 of the ABC dance competition, which kicked off in September. During the November 2 episode, Bristowe and Artem Chigvintsev gave their routine their all, but it still wasn’t enough for Inaba. While fans have quickly come to Bristowe’s defense, she encouraged them to reign it in.- Advertisement – Listen to Watch With Us to hear more about your favorite shows and for the latest TV news! “I know that Carrie Ann was getting heat on social media for being hard on me and I’m like, ‘Make it stop!’ Because this is a TV show, right?” the Canada native said on a recent episode of her “Off the Vine” podcast. “Carrie Ann is totally allowed her opinions. I’m allowed to not agree with them or feel hurt by them, but it doesn’t mean people need to go and bully on her. I heard that she feels bullied and that makes me feel so terrible because I’ve been bullied so hard online … Don’t go bullying her because she’s being hard on me. That’s her decision and she’s a judge. That’s why she’s paid the big bucks to be a judge on that show, right?”Kaitlyn Bristowe Reacts Carrie Ann Judging BacklashKaitlyn Bristowe and Carrie Ann Inaba. ABC/Eric McCandless (2)After the last episode of DWTS, viewers took to social media to discuss the differences in Bristowe’s scores and those of her fellow competitors. Some fans even wondered if Inaba was harder on Chigvintsev, 38, because of their past romance. After seeing some of the backlash online, the Hawaii native took aim at those who chose to attack her professional opinions.“I still get bullied. … I can’t believe it still happens as adults,” she said during the November 3 episode of The Talk. “I want to tell people who bully: It doesn’t make me change the way I judge. I’m not about to change because you try to bully me. It only makes me stand stronger in my convictions and what I believe in.”- Advertisement – Following their recent disappointing scores, Bristowe and the Russian ballroom pro admitted to Entertainment Tonight that Inaba’s judging was starting to feel “a little personal.” Despite her questions about the feedback she’s received, the former spin instructor doesn’t think Inaba deserves to be trolled.“I want everybody to not be mean to Carrie Ann even if she’s harsh on me,” Bristowe said on her podcast, adding that it makes her “sick” to see negative comments about the DWTS judge. “You can ask why. You can wonder why or be like, ‘Why are you doing this?’ But don’t be mean. That’s all I have to say.”Dancing With the Stars airs on ABC Mondays at 8 p.m. ET.- Advertisement – – Advertisement –last_img read more

Jockey Colin Keane enjoys year to remember | Racing News


first_imgThe landmark victory came on the back of him being crowned Ireland’s champion jockey for a second time – after a thrilling battle with Shane Foley – in a year in which he also rode his first two Classic winners on Siskin and Even So for his boss, Ger Lyons.“It couldn’t have gone much better and winning at the Breeders’ Cup was just brilliant,” said Keane of 2020.“The year started off with us winning a Classic with Siskin and then it went from strength to strength. We were lucky enough to win another with Even So, I won the Matron on Champers Elysees, winning the battle to be champion and topping it off with a Breeders’ Cup winner.- Advertisement – – Advertisement – “I wouldn’t be in the position I am today without Ger to be honest, he got me going and has brought us to where we are.”While Keane’s agent Ruaidhri Tierney cast his net far and wide in the search for winners in the closing weeks of the season, one trainer who did not employ the champion was Weld – yet when Christophe Soumillon was ruled out at the 11th hour having tested positive for Covid-19, it was Keane who was called upon.“It was just a case of being in the right place at the right time last weekend,” said Keane.“It’s not the way you want it to happen, but I’ll take it. Mr Weld isn’t someone I’ve ridden for much to be honest, so to get a ride in a big race and win on her for him is great.“We’d talked about it (tactics) and while we didn’t make a plan as such, Mr Weld said he wanted me to either be on the inside or the outside, but not the middle – as she’s a filly who likes a bit of space and she has a very good turn of foot.“Turning in I wasn’t looking to go between them, I just wanted to give her as clear a run as possible and she picked up very well.“You’d like to think she’s up there with the best about, it is very hard to beat Magical, she’s one of the very best, rock solid and never runs a bad race. Going there you’d be thinking if you’re second to Magical you’ve run a good race. It takes a very good one to beat her.”With two titles already in the bag, Keane is hopeful of keeping his momentum going into next season and he even picked up rides for Aidan O’Brien’s powerful Ballydoyle stable in the closing weeks.“Every year we set a target to beat the previous year’s tally – I didn’t think that would be possible this year because of Covid and my quarantine, but my agent did a great job in getting me on the right horses and we got into a great rhythm,” explained Keane.“It was September it all seemed to click, I had over 20 winners and it really got me going. I was lucky enough to team up with Aidan towards the end on a few spares with Seamie (Heffernan) suspended and Wayne (Lordan) injured and thankfully some of them won.“I’ve a lot to thank my agent for, he’s done a very good job.” Colin Keane has finally had time to reflect on a stellar season which was capped with a first Breeders’ Cup success on Tarnawa.Keane admits getting the ride on Dermot Weld’s filly was simply a case of being in the right place at the right time – but with all bar one rival behind him turning into the straight, he advertised his talents on a world stage.- Advertisement – “Thankfully it all fell right for us. It was a hard year, especially giving up two weeks with quarantine (to ride Siskin in the Sussex Stakes), so we really had to knuckle down, but it was worth it.”Keane cannot speak highly enough of Lyons, for whom Siskin and Even So were his first Classic successes, too.“I’ve been riding for the right people, I ride for a great boss so I’m very lucky,” said Keane.- Advertisement –last_img read more

DeepMind would have ‘probably failed’ without Google, says investor


first_imgGoogle Deepmind head Demis Hassabis speaks during a press conference ahead of the Google DeepMind Challenge Match in Seoul on March 8, 2016.Jung Yeon-Je | AFP |Getty Images | Getty Images DeepMind set out to crack artificial general intelligence (AGI), which is often referred to as the holy grail in AI. But, Sheikh said: “The concern, the question marks, have always been in commercialization … How do you do it?”While Google has found uses for DeepMind’s AI, its technology has not been widely applied elsewhere. It has partnered with the U.K. National Health Service but the size and scope of the project is relatively limited. DeepMind was also in talks with electricity grid operator National Grid, but ultimately it came to nothing.The Google acquisition gave DeepMind access to vast amounts of computing power that Google has across its data center network, which has allowed it to train AI models to do things like play abstract strategy board game Go. It also gave the start-up access to engineering talent, and a steady stream of finance. DeepMind costs Google’s parent company Alphabet hundreds of millions of dollars every year. In 2018, it made a loss of £470 million ($622 million), up from £281 million in 2017 and £127 million in 2016. Its losses are growing because it continues to hire hundreds of expensive researchers and data scientists but isn’t yet generating any significant revenue.Jon Crowcroft, a computer science professor at the University of Cambridge, told CNBC that it’s hard to see a business case for DeepMind’s scale and burn rate.“A normal investor would be looking at big customers and an income stream well before now,” Crowcroft said. “They have developed techniques and prototype tools that could lead to that, but [there is] a long way between lab and reality.”Another industry source, who did not wish to be named due to the sensitive nature of the matter, agreed that DeepMind would have eventually needed a big tech parent to survive indefinitely. “The company is engaging in research, not products, and wouldn’t be able to obtain indefinite VC funding without eventually having a business model,” they said, adding that Google is an excellent fit.“Google is large enough and AI is fundamentally important enough for its (highly profitable) business model that having DeepMind as a subsidiary makes solid commercial sense,” the source added. “If you think about DeepMind on its own today, DeepMind would have probably failed as a company because you wouldn’t be able to commercialize anything.”A DeepMind spokesperson said: “We chose Google as a partner because it was clear they were as passionate about AI as we were and since then our partnership has gone from strength-to-strength in pursuit of our shared long-term ambition for responsible and impactful AI.”Sheikh, who claims to be a friend of the company’s CEO and co-founder Demis Hassabis, said there were concerns about how DeepMind was ever going to make money from the beginning. “We spent five years in close discussions about this whole DeepMind thing,” he said.- Advertisement – – Advertisement –center_img – Advertisement – LONDON — One of DeepMind’s first investors believes the artificial intelligence company wouldn’t be around today if it hadn’t been acquired by Google.Founding investor Humayun Sheikh, who held 43,750 of DeepMind’s 3,386,754 shares in 2011, told CNBC that the London AI lab would have “probably failed” if Google hadn’t bought it for a reported $600 million in 2014. Facebook was also interested in buying DeepMind but ultimately the company accepted Google’s offer.“Commercialization for any AI based company is very difficult, unless you get absorbed by a big corporate,” said Sheikh, who now runs his own AI business called Fetch.ai, on a call last Friday. – Advertisement –last_img read more

The Masters: Jon Rahm tops ball then hits tree in ugly double-bogey | Golf News


first_imgJon Rahm made two mistakes on the same hole on his way to a costly double-bogey at The Masters Jon Rahm saw his Masters hopes dealt an almighty blow after two uncharacteristic errors in consecutive shots during the third round at Augusta National. The Spaniard held a share of the lead at the halfway stage but had slipped four behind playing partner Dustin Johnson by the time they reached the par-five eighth, where Rahm hit a glorious drive down the right side of the fairway and had a great opportunity to reach the green in two.Few could have predicted what was to follow, as Rahm inexplicably topped his second shot with a fairway wood and seeing his ball barely get airborne, with his approach racing along the ground and over into the pines on the opposite side of the fairway. – Advertisement – – Advertisement – Get Sky Sports Golf for just £10 a month All four days of The Masters exclusively live. Get our £10 golf offer. Find out more here. – Advertisement – Jon Rahm looking for his first major victory at The Masters and aiming to become the fourth Spaniard to win at Augusta National; Rahm topped an approach shot and then hit a tree on his way to a double-bogey seven at par-five eighth By Sky Sports GolfLast Updated: 14/11/20 8:22pm Rahm is looking to become the fourth Spanish winner of The Masters, following on from Jose Maria Olazabal, Seve Ballesteros and Sergio Garcia Rahm is looking to become the fourth Spanish winner of The Masters, following on from Jose Maria Olazabal, Seve Ballesteros and Sergio Garcia

Son of vaccinated soldier has severe vaccinia infection


first_imgMar 19, 2007 (CIDRAP News) – A 2-year-old Indiana boy is in critical condition in a Chicago hospital with eczema vaccinatum, a rare type of vaccinia virus skin infection that he contracted through contact with his father, a soldier who recently had a smallpox shot. She said the child is being given massive doses of VIG: “We’re well beyond any limits of the VIG that had previously been established. . . . We’ve skipped a couple of days [of treatment], but not many.” Siga news release on clinical trial of ST-246http://www.siga.com/?ID=52 The boy became ill with a rash in early March and was hospitalized in East Chicago, Ind. When the rash continued to spread, he was taken to UCMC on Mar 3, the UCMC statement said. His mother also has a vaccinia infection, though mild, and is hospitalized with her son. The Tribune report said it was unclear why the soldier was allowed to have contact with his son so soon after the immunization. An Army spokesman said officials were looking into the matter. Data mostly from the 1960s suggest that eczema vaccinatum occurred in between 10 and 39 cases out of every million first-time smallpox vaccinees, according to the CDC. But widespread smallpox immunization today could result in a higher rate, because of the large numbers of people with immunity weakened by cancer treatment, other immune-suppressing drugs, and HIV. Kahana said it was difficult to tell which of the drugs is most responsible for the patient’s improvement. The UCMC statement said personnel at Comer Children’s Hospital immediately suspected a severe and potentially contagious viral infection when the sick child arrived. Consequently they took extensive precautions to prevent vaccinia from spreading to healthcare workers and other patients, including putting the boy and his mother in a negative-pressure room. The boy has slowly improved since Mar 11, when treatment with ST-246 began, according to a UCMC pediatrican quoted by the Sun-Times. He was first treated with VIG, followed a few days later by cidofovir and a few days after that by ST-246, Kahana said. “Initially I don’t know that either the CDC or the drug company was very excited about letting us use the experimental antiviral, but we didn’t have much choice,” she said. The boy, who has a history of eczema, a risk factor for severe vaccinia infections, has been ill since early March and is being treated at the University of Chicago’s Comer Children’s Hospital. He has received several drugs, including an experimental antiviral for smallpox. DoD smallpox vaccination informationhttp://www.smallpox.army.mil/event/SPSafetySum.asp CDC smallpox sitehttp://www.bt.cdc.gov/agent/smallpox/index.asp Infection was nearly fatalBy the weekend of Mar 10 and 11, the boy had a rash over 80% of his body and was close to death, according to Chicago newspaper reports quoting Dr. Madelyn Kahana, chief of pediatric critical care medicine at UCMC. Sepsis was setting in, and he had to be put on a ventilator, the Chicago Tribune reported. He is also on pain medication and receiving wound care” very similar to that of a burn patient,” she said. At the CDC’s request, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted emergency permission to try ST-246, according to a Mar 18 report by the Chicago Sun-Times. In experiments, the drug has protected animals from vaccinia and other pox viruses, and it has been tested in a phase 1 clinical trial, according its maker, SIGA Technologies, Inc. Initially he needed mechanical ventilation because of “acute hypoxic respiratory failure related to sepsis or systemic inflammatory response,” but his need for ventilation is now due to pain medication, she said. Doctors treated him with vaccinia immune globulin (VIG), the primary recommended therapy for eczema vaccinatum, which was released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) from the Strategic National Stockpile. He has also been treated with the antiviral cidofovir and an experimental smallpox drug called ST-246, UCMC said. No previous cases in military programThe US military revived its long-discontinued smallpox vaccination program in late 2002, and by June 2006 about 1.1 million service members bound for the Middle East and other high-risk areas had been vaccinated. Until now, no cases of eczema vaccinatum or progressive vaccinia had been reported in the program, according to a Department of Defense (DoD) Web site. Kahana told CIDRAP News today that the boy is still in critical condition and on a ventilator, with the infection involving the full thickness of the epidermis over about 20% of his body. But he has not had any new lesions in about a week, she added. See also: The boy’s father received smallpox vaccine, in which vaccinia virus is the active ingredient, in late January in preparation for military deployment, according to a Mar 16 statement from the University of Chicago Medical Center (UCMC). But his deployment was delayed, and he was allowed to visit his family in mid-February. During the visit he had close contact with his son. Journal of Virology report on animal study of ST-246http://jvi.asm.org/cgi/content/abstract/79/20/13139 Siga Technologies news release on the use of ST-246 in this casehttp://www.siga.com/?ID=39 Infection control specialists have carefully documented all staff contacts with the boy and his mother, the statement said. The CDC has contacted people who might have been exposed to the boy before he was hospitalized in Chicago, and no additional cases have been found. CIDRAP overview of smallpox, including information on risks of vaccination Eczema is a well-known contraindication for smallpox vaccination, and safety guidelines say that vaccinees should avoid contact with anyone with a history of eczema until the vaccine lesion has fully healed. But according to the Sun-Times report, doctors said the sick boy’s father didn’t know he should stay away from his son after the vaccination.last_img read more

Ultra starts today: Everything your guests need to know before coming to the Ultra Europe festival


first_imgEverything is ready for another magnificent edition of the ULTRA Europe festival, which starts tomorrow in Split.During the ULTRA Europe festival, this city turns into the largest music center in the world, and an incredible tourist postcard from numerous locations in Split travels around the world through hundreds of accredited journalists. In order for everything to work to the highest standards, more than 2.000 people involved in the organization take care of it, and numerous city services are ready 24 hours a day and available to all citizens and visitors to Split.Due to the high security measures, the organizers recommend all visitors to get acquainted and adhere to the festival rules. Also, you as a host, whether working as a host in a family accommodation or hotel, acquaint your guests with the rules of the destination, tourism policy and rules of conduct prescribed by law in the City of Split.In order to make entering the stadium as easy and fast as possible, and the safety of all visitors at the highest level, this year the allowed size and type of bag with which entry is allowed is prescribed. Although the organizers advise not to come to the festival with a bag, if it is necessary, it must be plastic and transparent and not larger than 33 × 43 cm. Small clutch bags, travel bags and waist bags will be allowed. Professional photo and video cameras are prohibited, but GoPro and other action cameras can be brought. Trumpets, any kind of flammable substances, sprays, alcoholic beverages and food, lasers, larger chains, water pistols, face masks, as well as any kind of illegal substances, are strictly forbidden in the festival area. It is important to emphasize that visitors must have a valid identification document or driver’s license.Respecting the rules of destination, tourism policy and rules of conduct prescribed by law in the City of Split, ULTRA Europe festival organizers invite all festival visitors to abide by the adopted laws and rules to make their stay in one of the most beautiful Dalmatian cities a fond memory. From the city of Split, they point out how it is According to the decision on communal order, it is not allowed to move around the old city center of the City of Split without clothes, a part of clothes or in a bathing suit. For non-compliance with this provision, HRK 500,00 will be charged at the place where the misdemeanor was committed or HRK 1.000,00 per misdemeanor procedure.Transmit and inform your guests about this important information, in order to avoid embarrassing situations, both for guests and for Split as a tourist destination.last_img read more