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TDN MAGAZINE: Is This the Death of Synthetic Racing? And If So, Why?: Lucas Marquardt takes an in-depth look at the controversy and the myths about synthetic surfaces, and based on their substantially better safety record when it comes to catastrophic breakdown, asks the question, "Is the American Thoroughbred better off without them?" Click here for more.
Top News in Thursday's TDN
Darley Buys Into Animal Kingdom
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The Meydan winner's enclosure
© Horsephotos

In a deal that became effective earlier this week and that was structured by John Messara, Arrowfield Stud and Team Valor each agreed to sell part of their equity interest in G1 Dubai World Cup winner Animal Kingdom (Leroidesanimaux {Brz}) to Sheikh Mohammed, who will stand the horse at Darley in Kentucky when he shuttles to the Northern Hemisphere.

"I am just overwhelmed," said Team Valor’s Barry Irwin, commenting on Sheikh Mohammed’s interest in the 5-year-old. "I think it’s fantastic and in Darley, we’ve got as good a partner as you can have. You could look and see how he was beaming at the horse in the winner’s circle. Even though he didn’t win the race with one of his own horses, he was thrilled to see how this how this horse performed in the race. This horse is just now getting his accolades. This deal is also good for us because now we can breed our own horses here in Kentucky."

Irwin explained the rationale in reaching out to Darley.

"We were looking for a North American partner, and John thought they would be the best, because they would be able to support the horse with the mares they have there [in Kentucky]," he stated.

Irwin added that Darley will also be able to partner in Animal Kingdom on Southern Hemisphere time, given the large broodmare band they have amassed in Australia.

Darley’s total stake in the 2011 GI Kentucky Derby winner is 29%, and the farm is thrilled to be able to stand Animal Kingdom alongside the likes of Hard Spun, Bernardini and Medaglia d’Oro in the American winter and early spring.

"Animal Kingdom is outstanding," Darley’s Chief Operating Officer Olly Tait said in a release from Arrowfield. "Not only is he immensely talented, he has shown a rare ability to excel on turf, synthetic and dirt and win at a range of distances up to the mile and a quarter of the Kentucky Derby and the Dubai World Cup. His win at Meydan last Saturday was all class."

Messara added, "We are delighted to partner with Darley in the ownership of Animal Kingdom and management of his future international stud career. We have always had a great working relationship with Darley and have the utmost respect for HH Sheikh Mohammed and the Darley management team. With our unprecedented combined support Animal Kingdom will have every opportunity to develop from a champion racehorse into a champion sire."

To get the full writeup and all of the details, click here to download today's edition.

Taylor Made Farm

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