Team Valor’s former champion Animal Kingdom (Leroidesanimaux) got off the mark as a stallion when first crop daughter Earth Angel made a winning debut in Australia on Wednesday.
The regally bred Earth Angel (she is out of Redoute’s Choice’s champion daughter Miss Finland) was ridden patiently by Damien Oliver – who had his mount settled back in the field and after working her way into clear running found the line with a late rush to claim a long neck win in the
Earth Angel, the seventh runner for her sire to date (four of whom have placed thus far), made a positive impression on her jockey, who said after the win, “She will make a lovely three-year-old, she’s big and scopey with a long stride. The further she went, the better she got.”
The filly holds an entry in both the 2017 Gr1 Golden Slipper and Gr1 AJC Sires Produce Stakes.
Her sire Animal Kingdom was an exceptional and versatile champion, who competed at the highest level on dirt, turf and synthetics.
North America’s Champion 3YO Colt of 2011, Animal Kingdom won or placed in 10 of just 12 outings, winning the Gr1 Kentucky Derby (dirt), Gr1 Dubai World Cup (on tapeta) and Gr3 Vinery Spiral Stakes (on polytrack).
He was also second to dual US Horse Of The Year Wise Dan (Wiseman’s Ferry) in the 2012 Gr1 Breeders’ Cup Mile (turf), when Animal Kingdom accounted for a field which included European standouts Excelebration (Exceed And Excel) and Moonlight Cloud (Invincible Spirit).
Like leading South African sire Querari (Oasis Dream), Animal Kingdom is out of a daughter of triple German Horse Of The Year and multiple champion sire Acatenango (Surumu).
He had a filly fetch R300 000 at last year’s CTS Ready To Run Sale.
Animal Kingdom, expected to cover around 100 mares this season, is currently standing at Darley for a fee of $30 000.