Robert Kinsley’s Incomplete, always well placed under Mark Beecher, surged to the lead in the final quarter-mile and drew clear to a 2 3/4-length victory in the $50,000 International Gold Cup at Great Meadow Race Course in The Plains, Va., on Saturday, Oct. 15. Alfred C. Griffin Jr.’s Aero finished second, 10 3/4 lengths clear of Magalen O. Bryant’s G’Day G’Day in the 3 1/2-mile timber race.
Manown Kisor Jr.’s Gather No Moss, who had helped to set the pace, finished fourth, and 2010 International Gold Cup winner He’s a Conniver finished fifth. Incomplete, a 10-year-old Press Card gelding trained in Maryland by Ann D. Stewart, ran the distance in 8:06 on yielding turf.
Incomplete was a $500 supplemental entry for the historic International Gold Cup, and Stewart credited Beecher for suggesting the Virginia race over the New Jersey Hunt Cup at the Far Hills Races in New Jersey a week later. Beecher said he believed the expansive Great Meadow course would suit Incomplete, who subsequently was a supplemental entry for the New Jersey Hunt Cup at the Far Hills Races a week later.
The International Gold Cup shaped up as an opportunity for Merrifield Farm’s Bon Caddo to lock up the 2010 National Steeplechase Association timber title after winning the Virginia Gold Cup over the same course and as an chance for the top finishers in National Sporting Museum Chronicle Cup, led by winner Aero, to validate their credentials in a top timber race. Incomplete, in his first start of the fall season, had finished a distant sixth in the Chronicle Cup under Jody Petty on Oct. 1.
Petty rode Bon Caddo in the International Gold Cup, and Stewart turned to Beecher for both the ride and a suggested race. “It worked out well, Stewart said.
The first half of the race was a seesaw battle on the front end, with Bon Caddo, He’s a Conniver, and Gather No Moss alternating on the lead. As the field of eight timber veterans entered the backstretch for the second time, Incomplete was in good position immediately behind the leaders and slightly ahead of Aero.
The complexion of the race changed on the final run down the backstretch when Bon Caddo made a mistake at the 17th of 20 fences and unseated Petty. Entering the stretch, Aero surged past Gather No Moss and a tiring He’s a Conniver, but Incomplete uncorked a late drive and drew clear in the final furlong.
Incomplete scored his first victory since the 2009 My Lady’s Manor timber race for York, Pa., residents Robert and Ann Kinsley. Robert Kinsley and his five sons operate a construction and development company there.