Incoming Arrowfield Stud shuttler Animal Kingdom has cemented his ranking among the world’s very best racehorses with an exceptional victory in the G1 Dubai World Cup (2000m).
Animal Kingdom (5h Leroidesanimaux – Dalicia by Acatenango) won the 2011 Kentucky Derby for Team Valour and Arrowfield purchased a majority interest in him last December.
He had changed hands after an eye-catching second to USA Horse of the Year Wise Dan in the Breeders’ Cup Mile on turf. He resumed this year with a second to Point of Entry in the G1 Gulfstream Turf Handicap G1 on February 9 before travelling to Meydan.
Animal Kingdom (USA) is trained by highly regarded Englishman Graham Motion and was ridden by Joel Rosario whose decision to progress forward steadily in the back straight proved to be a winning move.
Full of running behind the leader Royal Delta, he accelerated turning for home and powered well clear of the field. Only Red Cadeaux could muster a chase, but he was still two lengths in arrears at the line. “He’s an extraordinary animal,” Motion said. “The way he won tonight reminded me of the way he won the Kentucky Derby.”
Bearing the USA suffix and by a Brazilian-bred sire, Animal Kingdom is the only winner from a mare who claimed a G3 at Baden-Baden.
His sire Leroidesanimaux, a son of Blushing Groom stallion Candy Stripes, stands at Stonewall Farm in Florida. He was a G1 winner of the Atto Mile and Citation Handicap and was also runner-up to Artie Schiller in the 2005 Breeders’ Cup Mile.
Animal Kingdom is the first foal out of Dalicia. Team Valor owner Barry Irwin purchased her for 400,000 euros at a Baden-Baden Sale in October 2005. He intended to send her to Kingmambo but the Lane’s End Farm champion was taken out of service after a back injury and Leroidesanimaux was the next choice.
Shadai Stud’s Yoshida family bought Dalicia for 230,000gns at the 2009 Tattersalls Sale.
Arrowfield chairman John Messara will make summer plans for Animal Kingdom and they may include Royal Ascot starts in either in the Queen Anne Stakes or Prince of Wales’s Stakes.