01/25/2012 12:56PM

Animal Kingdom, Toby's Corner and two Fair Hill mornings

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Toby's Corner and a Fair Hill sunrise, December 13, 2011

Animal Kingdom and Toby's Corner are both preparing for 2012 returns, and, until January 10, both Grade 1 winners were nestled in at Graham Motion's barn at the idyllic Fair Hill Training Center in Maryland.  Among their stablemates were Grade I winner Aruna, Grade 1 winner Summer Soiree, Grade 1 winner Sanagas, Grade 3 winner Dynamic Holiday and the promising young Stephanoatsee - a testament to Graham's fantastic 2011 season.

Morningsat the beautiful training facility can resemble paintings, as Toby's Corner walking back to his barn (above) can attest. Here are a few photos of 2011 3-year-old champion Animal Kingdom, 2011 Wood Memorial winner Toby's Corner and several other talented Graham Motion trainees.  As always, Graham and his wife Anita were extremely accommodating, and the barn staff was upbeat and helpful.

The photos were taken December 13, 2011 or January 8, 2012. 

Above/below:  Kentucky Derby winner and champion Animal Kingdom looks fantastic.  (below, James Slater up)

Above:  Animal Kingdom's face reminds me so much of his sire, Leroidesanimaux.

Above/below:  Just before sunrise on January 8, 2012.  

Above:  Just after sunrise, a horse heads to the track.  

Above/below:  Toby's Corner heads to the track for a workout with stablemate Animal Kingdom.  It seems a horse can't help but be more relaxed at Fair Hill....

Above/below:  Toby's Corner (left) and Animal Kingdom gallop around the track before settling in for a workout.  It was such a chilly morning - hence the blankets.

Above:  I'm a big fan of strong-faced horses, and Toby's Corner, by Bellamy Road, sure has 'the look.'  He looks magnificent.

Above/below:  Grade 1 winners Animal Kingdom (left) and Toby's Corner working on January 8, 2012.

Above:  Graham Motion, left, watching Toby's Corner and Animal Kingdom after the workout.

Above/below:  Toby's Corner heads back to the barn.

Above/below:  Toby's Corner and Animal Kingdom walk the shedrow after the work.

Above/below:  Bath time for champion Animal Kingdom.

Above:  Among the other Graham Motion trainees at Fair Hill was multiple stakes winner (and cute-faced) Dynamic Holiday.

Above/below:  Stakes-placed Stephanoatsee seemed to say, "Come play with me!," above. Below, portrait of the handsome stakes-placed 3-year-old half-brother to Shackleford and Lady Joanne (that's a mouthful!).

Above/below:  Stephanoatsee.

Above/below:  Popular old multiple stakes winner Icabad Crane.

Above:  Summer Soiree who, in 2011, won the Grade 1 Del Mar Oaks and two Grade 3s.

Above/below:  Stakes winner Marion Ravenwood and, below, Grade 1 winner Aruna.

Above:  Spinster (G1) winner Aruna, foreground, and Hollywood Turf Cup (G1) winner Sanagas in background.

Above/below:  Grade 1 winner Sanagas, a German-bred 2006 gelding by Lomitas.  The turf specialist was recently sold to an Australian-based racing group, whose goal for Sanagas is the Melbourne Cup.

Above and below:  Toby's Corner at Fair Hill, before sunrise, December 13, 2011.

With a very special thanks to Graham and Anita Motion and to Sally Goswell at the Fair Hill Training Center.

Animal Kingdom's Kentucky Derby: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9rpx8ANdCXk

Toby's Corner defeats odds-on Uncle Mo in the Wood Memorial: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fbHYYuxptCk

Sanagas winning the Hollywood Turf Cup: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qVz8l-Uhfjg

Aruna's Spinster victory: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rbq9lGp2-0Y

Summer Soiree's Del Mar Oaks: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pTcfhyrp_dA

Steve Nick More than 1 year ago
As always, beautiful photographs by the incomparable Barbara Livingston! Thanks for the update on Animal Kingdom. He appears to be doing splendidly.
Julie June More than 1 year ago
Lovely Barbara - oh how I love the transition a horse makes between three and four years old. Another set of remarkable pictures. So often people only see horses on race day and don't realize all the days and hours that go into the effort that only lasts minutes in front of a crowd. Fair Hill looks magical through your lens... thanks for taking us behind the scenes..... j
Marcy Leonard More than 1 year ago
Stunning as usual. Loved every word, every photo...
Celeste More than 1 year ago
Thank you for sharing your visits to Fair Hill and Graham Motion's barn!! For several years I have thought that this would be exactly where I would want to be if I were a horse in training - it is such an idyllic setting and Mr. Motion's barn seems to always put the horses first. Thank you so much for capturing the beauty and charm and charisma of the horses as well as the place. While I agree with several others that you have a great job, I do fully understand how hard it must be and your diligence and attention to details truly pays off for the rest of us to enjoy. I am grateful that you share your talents and skills with us - thank you!!
Kathy Hunter More than 1 year ago
Barbara these a re wonderful pictures. Quite a nice group at Fairhill. Thank you for sharing.
Sundown More than 1 year ago
The kind and thoughtful words of Celeste would be echoed by many a person that finds their way to this most delightful spot. The efforts ARE truly appreciated whether one gets the themes (they are there), techniques (many) or use of light (in a digital age) at all. The photos are always visually amazing and much anticipated. This was another wondrous post.
Beverly Sutton-Lawrence More than 1 year ago
Lovely photo session, thanks for sharing.
RoMo More than 1 year ago
.. Ms Barb ........ Great photos and commentary ..! The one photo of the two guy "head and head" .. should be the National Face of TB Racing .. it so captures the essence of the racing horse..
Distaffer More than 1 year ago
In response to "You have the best job in the world" comments people post. Do you realize how hard Barbara works?? It is her work ethic, artistic talent, and love of racing that make her photos among the best in the world. If anyone thinks it is easy, think again.
laura More than 1 year ago
Barbara, what beautiful photos! I don't know how you're able to capture the sunrise after putting in so many late nights! You never fail to amaze! .... Fair Hill looks to be paradise for horses! It's nice to see them get a break from the very structured U.S. style of training and racing - from the barn to the track and back again. Even horses need a vacation! Love every photo!