Way back in 1976 Sheila Young snagged gold, silver and bronze speedskating medals at the Innsbruck Olympics, then wheeled away with national and world bicycle sprint championships. Her career has been on ice since she married former Olympic cyclist Jim Ochowicz, but now America's fastest lady has returned—lugging daughter Katie, 3. "Having a child has really organized my schedule a lot," said Sheila, 30. Apparently so. At the National Bicycle Championships in Trexlertown, Pa., Sheila blew away world champ Sue Novara to win every sprint she entered. Next stop: this week's world meet in Czechoslovakia.
Truman's word war
As a self-professed "alcoholic, drug addict, homosexual and genius," author Truman Capote, 56, has lost many a bottle but usually won his wars. Lately, however, friends have been worrying again about his health. But shortly before entering the hospital for a prostate operation, the little warrior made a rare appearance at a Manhattan party for the new Australian WWI film Gallipoli. He assured gossip maven Liz Smith that his recent collapse in a Long Island post office was caused not by drink or drugs but probably by tic douloureux, a severe facial neuralgia. Quoth Capote: "I went in to get my mail, fainted and didn't know a thing until about 55 hours later."
Could Elijah Blue Allman, delivering a Bronx cheer from behind mom Cher at Monaco's Hotel de Paris, be telling off the critics? Monte Carlo audiences, wowed last year by Cher's sexy performance in scanty jungle garb, were underwhelmed by her 1981 act—in Folies Bergère-like feathers, Cher showed baby pictures of herself projected on a giant screen. Prince Rainier's cousin, Prince Louis de Polignac, 71, diplomatically called the show "a private thing" and "very American" and added, "I think people who remembered her performance last year were a little disappointed."
Big daddy Ferrigno
Lou Ferrigno, 29, titular captain of his team, hulked out of the Third Annual Celebrity Racquetball Tournament at L.A.'s Sports Connection, explaining: "They were afraid I'd break someone's head swinging my racket." But his quintet placed second (out of 44 teams) to Jimmie Walker's dyn-o-mites in the event that raised $12,000 for the John Wayne Cancer Clinic at UCLA. Not so tough where his 2-month-old daughter Shanna is concerned, Lou missed the awards ceremony—babysitting. "Shanna's more demanding than the studio," he said. "She wouldn't give me the day off."
Kate and Mike
The rock usually associated with Katharine Hepburn is Plymouth, or maybe Gibraltar, but backstage at a Madison Square Garden concert by the Jack-sons, Kate buddied with lead singer Michael. It wasn't as Off the Wall as it seemed. The two became friends last spring when Jackson, 23, visited the 71-year-old actress on the New Hampshire set of On Golden Pond. "Tonight's going to be magic," promised Michael. And it was, though a gang of hoods rampaged through the aisles. Kate, however, with niece Patricia, the family's real rock fan, stayed unharmed right through the finale, Shake Your Body.