05/17/2013 5:53PM

Pimlico: Emotional Kitten noses out Summer of Fun in Hilltop

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Tom Keyser
Emotional Kitten, ridden by Joel Rosario, surges to narrowly prevail in the Hilltop for 3-year-old fillies.

BALTIMORE – It really is true. Good things do come to those who wait.

Emotional Kitten was entered in a stakes race on Kentucky Derby Day, but her trainer, Wesley Ward, told owner Ken Ramsey he thought she would benefit by having a couple more weeks until her next start. That came on Friday, and the wait was worth it, because Emotional Kitten scored a mild upset in the $100,000 Hilltop Stakes for 3-year-old fillies on the turf at Pimlico.

Emotional Kitten ($12) just got up in the very last jump under Joel Rosario to win the Hilltop by nose over even-money favorite Summer of Fun, who finished 1 1/4 lengths in front of third-place Zenzara. Emotional Kitten completed 1 1/16 miles on firm turf in 1:41.98.

The win was the third in 10 starts for Emotional Kitten, a daughter of Ramsey’s sire Kitten’s Joy. In her prior start, she won a first-level allowance at Keeneland on April 7.

“She’d been working unbelievable at Keeneland,” Ward said. “I had her in on Derby Day, but I didn’t think she was quite there. I told Mr. Ramsey I thought a couple more weeks would do a lot of good.”

Rosario has been aboard for her last two races, both wins. In both cases, he has taken Emotional Kitten well back early, and that has resulted in a stronger finish.

“He’s gotten her to settle nice,” Ward said. “I think that’s the way she wants to be ridden. She’s got a big, big future.”