From a Maryland Jockey Club release
Lady Sheila Stable’s graded-stakes winner Hot City Girl broke on top and never looked back Saturday, wiring nine opponents to impressively win the $100,000 Safely Kept at Laurel Park on the Fall Festival of Racing program.
Hot City Girl, a 3-year-old filly trained by Linda Rice and ridden by Cornelio Velasquez, drew away down the stretch to win by 8 1/4 lengths over Stroke Play. It was a nose back to Paulassilverlining in third. Hot City Girl covered the seven furlongs in 1:22.70 after setting fractions of :23.01, :45.49 and 1:09.97.
A New York-bred daughter of City Zip who broke her maiden at Aqueduct in November, Hot City Girl finished fourth in Laurel’s Caesar’s Wish and fourth in the Bouwerie at Belmont before being given some time off after finishing fifth in the Mother Goose (G1) in June. She’s since returned to win the Charles Town Oaks (G3), Safely Kept and an allowance optional claimer at Belmont two weeks ago.
“She needed some time, a little rest (after the Mother Goose), and she’s done nothing but improve since then,” Rice said. “Coming into the fall she really looked like she was maturing and going the right way. We had her at Saratoga in the Prioress (G2) against Cavorting but we scratched her. We also added blinkers. She’s a little more focused. I think she’s getting better with age.
“This was a good race for her, but I was a little nervous about bringing her back so soon, even though she has been training great. On the back side they were putting a little pressure on her, but she handled it well. On the turn, I knew that she was ready for them today.”
Rice said Hot City Girl could make a return trip to Maryland early next year for the Barbara Fritchie (G2).