In this race, he did have, yet again, another garden spot, but here he showed how easily he can rate. Eskendereya, could've easily taken the lead and gone on a merry go round show with the sloth-like pace the two leaders were setting. He could've faught for his head, when asked to go so rediculously slow, but no, he settled behind the pace, dropping his head and going into that big powerful stride of his.
Around the far turn Eskendereya remained the same way, not try to rush, or pull his jockey, unlike Awesome Act who was drafting in right behind Eskendereya and was under a strangle hold. When asked for run Eskendereya took the lead with ease, seeming to canter by his fully extended foes. Yet again, he effortlessly opened up an ever widening gap of daylight, even though he was being held in, and asked for nothing. This was a perfect prep for Eskendereya, not to taxing in the least, and will set him up well for his date with the Derby on May 1st.
On an ending note, I would like to say I hope people will stop dismissing Jackson Bend. He is still no worse than second, and has spent his last three starts playing bridesmaid to Eskendereya and Winslow Homer, both brilliant, and one a potential monster. Jackson Bend out gamed Awesome Act in the stretch, and would've been the winner of both the Fountain of Youth and Wood Memorial had Eskendereya not been Eskendereya. Do I think he can get another furlong against 20 other horses, no. Do I think he can get another half a furlong at Pimlico, with more like 10 other horses, yes. He is not "second tier, " and deserves more respect than that.