Animal Kingdom wins Vinery Spiral Stakes

FLORENCE, Ky. (AP) - Animal Kingdom roared to the front at the turn then held off Decisive Moment to win the $500,000 Spiral Stakes on Saturday at Turfway Park.

The 3-year-old colt, ridden by Alan Garcia and trained by Graham Motion, thrust himself into the Kentucky Derby picture by easily turning away a late bid from Decisive Moment to win by 2¾ lengths.

Animal Kingdom paid $8, $4.60 and $4 while covering the 1 1-8-mile race over synthetic surface in 1:52.32. Decisive Moment, ridden by Kerwin Clark, paid $6.60 and $4.60. Twinspired finished third and paid $6.

Favorite Positive Response struggled with the early pace and faded to ninth.

The $285,000 winner's purse gives Animal Kingdom enough graded stakes earnings to run in the Kentucky Derby.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)