03/14/2012 12:36PM

Animal Kingdom likely out three months

Barbara D. Livingston
Animal Kingdom came out of a Saturday workout "sore," said his trainer, Graham Motion.

HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. – A bone scan done on Animal Kingdom revealed the 2011 Kentucky Derby winner has suffered a stress fracture of the ilium - part of the pelvis - which will likely keep the horse out of training for at least three months, according to trainer Graham Motion on Wednesday.

Motion said the injury was unrelated to the one that forced Animal Kingdom to miss the second half of his 3-year-old campaign.

“He has a stress fracture,” said Motion. “He does not have a fracture per se. It’s the beginnings of a fracture. It’s not an injury that can be discovered by a simple X-ray. Fortunately we got him in for the bone scan, and it’s great we were able to catch this thing before it became more significant. It is definitely unrelated to his previous injury.”

Motion said Dr. Dean Richardson of the New Bolton veterinary center at the University of Pennsylvania told him the results of the bone scan were a combination of “good news and bad news.”

“Dr. Richardson said under the circumstances, this is probably the best news we could have had with a horse that had been injured like this,” said Motion.

Motion discovered Sunday morning that Animal Kingdom was “sore” coming out of a routine workout at Palm Meadows the previous day. Shortly thereafter, he and Barry Irwin of Team Valor International, the colt’s owner, made the decision to cancel plans to send Animal Kingdom to Dubai for the $10 million World Cup on March 31.

Animal Kingdom underwent surgery in late June to repair a hairline fracture of a hock discovered following his sixth-place finish in the Belmont Stakes.

Motion said that Animal Kingdom will stay in Florida for a month to be hand-grazed, then travel to the Fair Hill training center in Maryland and undergo a second bone scan at New Bolton.

“Depending on the results of the second scan, if everything seems to be heading in the right direction, he’ll likely be able to begin hand-walking at Fair Hill and most likely would have three months total off.”

Motion and Team Valor will still be heading to Dubai with Lucky Chappy, who will compete in the UAE Derby.

“We are taking Lucky Chappy because we think he generally belongs in the race,” said Motion. “He wasn’t going over just to accompany Animal Kingdom.”