client area


News Headlines

Monday, April 8, 2019
G1 winning mare SERENA’S SONG (bay mare by Rahy out of Imagining foaled in Kentucky on April 4th, 1992) celebrated turning 27 on April 4th...
Wednesday, April 3, 2019
Denali is proud to announce that our very own resident mare Thin Disguise had two of her daughters win awards at the New York Breeders Awards this week for clients Dr. William Wilmot and Dr. Joan Taylor...
Monday, March 11, 2019
Chocolate Kisses earned a spot in the gate for the May 3 Longines Kentucky Oaks (G1) with her come-from-behind victory in the $200,000 Honeybee Stakes (G3) March 9 at Oaklawn Park...
Author: Blood-Horse
Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Animal Kingdom will return in the $2 million Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IT) at Santa Anita Park Nov. 3, Team Valor International announced Oct. 2.

The winner of the 2011 Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) heads to California with a chance at becoming the first Derby victor to earn Breeders' Cup glory since Unbridled in 1990.

Animal Kingdom, champion 3-year-old male in 2011, scored an easy turf win Feb. 18 at Gulfstream Park in his only start this year. He developed a stress fracture of the ilium three weeks later that knocked him out of training for the $10 million Dubai World Cup (UAE-I).

The injury did not require surgery and healed with 30 days of stall rest. Animal Kingdom resumed training in June and began breezing Aug. 21. Over the summer, trainer Graham Motion suggested the Mile as a viable option if the 4-year-old colt encountered no setbacks. Team Valor CEO Barry Irwin agreed, but he and Motion decided to not reveal the plan until Animal Kingdom showed in his training that the race was a reasonable goal.

"Coming off the layoff, the Mile just seems very logical for him," said Motion, who captured the John Deere Breeders' Cup Turf (gr. IT) in 2004 with Better Talk Now and Emirates Airline Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Turf (gr. IT) with Shared Account in 2010. "He certainly has the turn of foot to handle it. The timing is right for his schedule coming back, and the caliber of horse that he is, you're not going to look for a nice, easy spot. It's a totally different situation than last winter when we ran him in the Gulfstream allowance to get ready for the Dubai World Cup. Going a mile, we feel he should be very fit for this race, and he deserves the opportunity."

On the morning of Oct. 2, Animal Kingdom breezed five furlongs in company with Badleroibrown on the turf racetrack across the street from Fair Hill Training Center, Motion's base in Elkton, Md. The official time was :50.20 for the final four furlongs, since there is no five-furlong pole on the undulating course.

Animal Kingdom is a homebred son of Leroidesanimaux, the champion turf male of 2005 and runner-up in that year's Breeders' Cup Mile at Belmont Park. Last year, prior to winning the Kentucky Derby and finishing second in the Preakness Stakes (gr. I) on dirt, he prevailed in Turfway Park's Vinery Racing Spiral Stakes (gr. III) on Polytrack. He is the 7-1 third choice in Las Vegas future book wagering for the Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I), but Motion and Irwin prefer the shorter distance for his first start in 8 1/2 months.

comments powered by Disqus