Kentucky Derby winner Animal Kingdom now in Florida

2012 Kentucky Derby winner Animal Kingdom

Kentucky Derby winner Animal Kingdom arrived by van in Florida on Wednesday looking to find better weather for training.  He will now train at the Palm Meadows Training Center in Boynton Beach, Fla., along with 2011 Wood Memorial winner Toby’s Corner.  Both four year olds had been in training for Graham Motion at Fair Hill Training Center in Maryland. The unseasonably warm and snow-free weather allowed Motion to keep them close to his home base in Maryland for longer than he anticipated.

“It looked like it was going to be a nasty week,” Motion said. “I thought we would be better off to get them down there and not have to worry about it. Because of the long trip, I’ll postpone their upcoming works a couple of days, probably until Tuesday of next week.”

As we said in our January 9th blog – see  Animal Kingdom and Toby’s Corner have been on a similar work out schedule and look to continue their workouts together.

The major goal for Animal Kingdom is the Dubai World Cup on March 24.  The Dubai World Cup, worth US $10 million in prize money alone, is classified as a ‘Group One Flat Race’ for four year old thoroughbreds and above, and spans a distance of 2,000m (one mile, two furlongs).  It was previously run on dirt but it is now contested on an All-Weather surface.  The Gulfstream Park Turf Handicap on February 11 is a strong possibility for his 2012 debut.

“I think physically, he’s a bigger, stronger animal that he was last year,” said Motion It appears that Motion has been impressed with last years Kentucky Derby winner, Animal Kingdom since he returned to training.

Toby’s Corner is unraced since winning the Wood Memorial in April, 2010.  He missed the 2011 Kentucky Derby with a hind leg injury. “He’s on the same schedule as Animal Kingdom, or maybe a little ahead of him,” Motion said.