Slow going this week

The Bob Baffert-trained Silvertongue Fox made his two-turn debut a winning one when he scored a hard-earned victory going 1 1/16 miles at Santa Anita on Thursday. Although the son of Talkin Man had to struggle down the stretch, Baffert said he threw a shoe at the start and got stuck down on the inside the whole way. The track was very heavy that day, the result of recent rains, so this actually was a solid, professional victory. Now, it's a question whether Baffert has enough time to move him up against quality horses and still have him ready on the first Saturday in May.

At Laurel, Marciano, coming off an excellent second to Talk is Money in the Miracle Wood Stakes, romped by 9 1/4 lengths in the 1 1/16-mile Herat Stakes. The son of Two Punch was able to lay just off the pace this time, and merely toyed with his field. This is no doubt another talented Maryland horse.

In Dubai, Qawaqeb, a son of A.P. Indy out of Roamin Rachel, broke his maiden going a mile by 4 1/2 lengths. It was his fifth career start after failing to break his maiden in California last year for Eoin Harty. The other division was won by first-time starter Marhoob, a son of Mr. Prospector, who scored by 1 1/2 lengths in faster time.

The other races for 3-year-olds this past weekend – the Best Turn and Baldwin stakes -- involved sprinters and should have little impact on the Derby picture, although Skip to the Stone, winner of the Baldwin, is bred to go long and looks to be improving rapidly

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