Yesterday afternoon, the 2011 Kentucky Derby Winner Animal Kingdom, arrived at the Fair Hill Training Center in Cecil County to prepare for the second leg of the Triple Crown. Trained by Maryland-based Graham Motion, Animal Kingdom spent the winter in Florida before heading to Kentucky for the Derby.
Motion confirmed that Animal Kingdom will run in the 136th Preakness Stakes on May 21. He told the Maryland Jockey Club’s Tom Chuckas, “We certainly plan to be there. Its going to be exciting. I feel really good because we are coming to the next leg with a fresh horse, which is going to be in our favor.”
Mortion moved to the U.S. from England with his family when he was 16 years old. He has been involved with Maryland racing for the past 26 years, getting his start working for trainers Jonathan Sheppard and Bernie Bond. He started his own training business in 1993, first being based out of Laurel Park before moving to Fair Hill in 2002.
Animal Kingdom is by Leroidesanimaux and out of Dalicia. The chestnut colt was bred in Kentucky by Denali Stud and is currently owned by Team Valor International (which owns a training barn at Fair Hill). The colt now has five starts, with three wins and two places for a total career earnings of $2,171,800.
Animal Kingdom winning the 2011 Kentucky Derby – photo by Wendy Wooley/EquiSport Photo