Animal Kingdom favorite to win Queen Anne Stakes

Jun 17, 2013 10:11 AM

Kentucky Derby winner Animal Kingdom, bred and owned by Team Valor and trained by Graham Motion, is the odds-on favorite to win the Queen Anne Stakes Tuesday as the United Kingdom begins its highlighted racing season at Royal Ascot.

Should he top a classy field of 13 runners, Animal Kingdom will become the first thoroughbred to win Group 1 stakes on three different surfaces in three different countries.

After his victory in the 2011 Kentucky Derby on the dirt track at Churchill Downs, the five-year-old son of Leroidesanimaux captured the 2013 Emirates Airline Dubai World Cup on the Dubai all-weather artificial surface earlier this year. The Queen Anne Stakes will be run at the one-mile distance over a grass course.

Handicappers listed the American entry at odds of 4-6 despite strong opposition from Trainer Aidan O’Brien’s highly regarded Declaration of War, who was listed at 7-1, and the John Gosden-trained Elusive Kate at 8-1.

Animal Kingdom, who will be ridden by U.S.-based  jockey John Velazquez, was bred by Team Valor, the group that was founded by Barry Irwin, the former columnist for the Daily Racing Form who has become a prominent leader in America’s thoroughbred racing industry.

Following the Dubai race, Trainer Graham Motion announced that he would not continue as trainer for the Team Valor stable but agreed to remain as conditioner for Animal Kingdom through the Queen Anne Stakes.

The race will be televised by both TVG and HRTV with a post time of approximately 6:30 a.m. PDT.  

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