Spencer Road, returning to the races after a year’s absence, prevailed in an extended battle with reigning timber champion Foyle to win the $30,000 Grand National, the middle jewel of Maryland’s timber triple crown on Saturday, April 19. Arcadia Stable’s Delta Park finished third.
Owned by Gerry Brewster, Eleanor T. Russell, and Joseph Tydings, Spencer Road entered the Grand National as a timber maiden longshot. He finished third in last year’s John Rush Streett Memorial, a timber maiden race, and then finished second in the Grand National’s Benjamin Murray Memorial. But he and the first finisher were disqualified for going off course, giving the victory to Foyle. Merriefield Farm’s Foyle secured his timber title with back-to-back victories in the International Gold Cup and Pennsylvania Hunt Cup.
Spencer Road, ridden by Eric Poretz, and Foyle, under James Slater, hooked up over the last fence and battled to the finish line, with Spencer Road getting the advantage of the head bob. Trained in Maryland by Blythe Miller Davies, Spencer Road ran the Grand National’s 3 1/4 miles in 6:13 on firm ground at the Butler course.