08/30/2001 11:00PM

Bel Serenata offers little value


SAN MATEO, Calif. - Bel Serenata, who tested Grade 2 foes at Del Mar on July 29, looks tough to beat at a short price when she drops into a first-level allowance race in Sunday's feature at Bay Meadows.

Six entered the mile turf race, which is restricted to 3-year-old fillies who have not won $3,000 other than maiden or claiming. The purse is $32,000.

Bel Serenata, a daughter of Southern Halo, did not win until her 10th start, when she posted a romping victory in a straight maiden race on the Bay Meadows turf. Before that, she had been second twice in maiden turf races at Santa Anita.

After her maiden victory, trainer Sean McCarthy sent her to Woodbine in Canada, where she finished second in the $135,000 Ontario Damsel, a 6 1/2-furlong grass race. Most recently, she tried the Grade 2 San Clemente at a mile on the Del Mar turf. She showed good speed to the final turn, but then weakened and finished last.

Sunday's competition figures to be much easier, as four of her five foes are coming out of starter allowance races. The other, Lady Cara, won a $32,000 starter at Pleasanton on July 4 and then finished eighth and last in an allowance race at Del Mar. She actually looks as good as any of Bel Serenata's foes. Armando Lage is the trainer.

Another who must be considered is Peninsula Heritage, who posted a wire-to-wire victory against older foes in a $32,000 starter allowance at Santa Rosa in her most recent start. She will be trying the turf for the first time, however. Peninsula Heritage is trained by Jerry Hollendorfer and will be ridden by Russell Baze.

The fifth race on the nine-race program is an allowance race on the turf for fillies and mares. The Southern California invader Indeedyedo looks like the one to beat in that race.