Second US Stakes-Winner for Animal Kingdom
Tara Madgwick - Tuesday, 8 August 2017
Two year-old colt Continental Divide scored a stylish win in the $US100,000 Graduation Stakes at Del Mar on Sunday to give Animal Kingdom (USA) his second stakes-winner from 11 first-crop US runners.

At only his second start, Continental Divide jumped smartly and settled to race mid-field until the home turn he swept past his rivals for an easy win, almost a length ahead of Smokem, who had beaten him on his 21 July debut.

Animal KingdomThe colt's performance, running the 5.5 furlongs (~1100 metres) in 1:05.27, impressed his trainer Jim Cassidy. 

"He wants to go farther. For him to go five-and-a-half, you try him out of his element and he still wins," he said.

Owned by former technology executive Deron Pearson, Continental Divide was bought from the Barretts May Sale of 2YOs in training at Del Mar for $US245,000, the top price at the Sale.

He is the third winner from stakes-placed mare Bandora, from the family of Group 1 winner Love Theway Youare.

Animal Kingdom has done well with his first crop of Australian two year-olds with six winners last season including Group III placed Lord Cecil, Flemington winner Royal Phoenix and highly promising Earth Angel, the daughter of champion filly Miss Finland.

Winner of both the Kentucky Derby and Dubai World Cup, Animal Kingdom stands at Arrowfield this spring at a fee of $27,500.

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