07/02/2003 11:00PM

Favored Bartok's Blithe wins Pleasanton Senorita


PLEASANTON, Calif. - Favored Bartok's Blithe ($5) was last early but unleashed a strong quick to capture the Pleasanton Senorita Stakes at the Alameda County Fair on Thursday.

Bartok's Blithe, who won the $200,000 Melair at Hollywood Park two starts back, seemed to have the field measured in the one mile and 70 yard race. She beat Sanibel Sunset by one-half length in 1:39.34.

"They told me not to worry because I was on the best horse so I didn't worry," winning jockey Frank Alverado said. "They said stay out of trouble and move her at the three-eighths pole. When I asked her, she took off."

Cinema Paradisa set a pressured early pace before fading badly. Third-place finisher Amber Hills, who got a dream stalking trip in third, grabbed the lead at the quarter pole before Sanibel Sunset went past her. But Bartok's Blithe had her measured and won.

Bartok's Blithe, a Morry Cohen homebred, won for the third time in nine starts. She earned $30,900 to lift her career total to $216,516.