03/16/2002 1:00AM

Serena's Tune ends well

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NEW ORLEANS - Serena's Tune shouldered lofty expectations throughout her career, and though she never reached the top of the game, she at least leaves it on a winning note. Serena's Tune won the $125,000 Victoria Lass Handicap on Saturday at Fair Grounds in what was probably her final start before being bred to Storm Cat this spring.

By Mr. Prospector, Serena's Tune is the first foal produced by the champion filly Serena's Song, and because of her pedigree she commanded a $1 million bid at the Keeneland July yearling sale in 1999. Serena's Tune hinted at high-class ability as a 3-year-old, but in the end, the Victoria Lass was the richest stakes win of her career.

When she finished fourth in her last start, the Pan Zareta Handicap here, Serena's Tune chased a fast pace set by Hallowed Dreams. Saturday, jockey Robby Albarado took Serena's Tune back off the pace of Extended View and let her do her running in the stretch. Serena's Tune came between horses to catch Sweet Nanette in deep stretch, drawing away to a 3 3/4-length victory.

The favorite in a seven-horse field, Serena's Tune, who is trained by Josie Carroll, paid $6.40 to win while running the six-furlong distanced in 1:10.11.

Sweet Nanette, though no match for the winner, ran well to finish 1 1/4 lengths ahead of longshot Dominica. Sweet Nanette had not raced since May and was coming off an injury that required surgery.