THE JACK KOPAS STABLE is back at Buffalo Raceway with another star ready to continue her career as one of the world's fastest pacers -- like Kopas-trained stars before her.
The Kopas star is Keystone Wallis, who held the world record of 1:55 2/5 for a 2-year-old filly on a 5/8 -mile track last year. One week later, in her only out-of-the money finish, she was fifth to Central Park West's world record 1:53 3/5 in the Breeders Crown at Pompano Park.
Last season, Keystone Wallis won 12 of 20 starts, with six second-place finishes and one third-place.
Keystone Wallis is the "Queen" of the Kopas stable's 23 colts and fillies (all 2 or 3-year-olds) trained by Jack Kopas and his son, Roger, and usually driven by another Kopas son, John.
Most of the 2-year-olds are entered in the non-betting "baby series," which usually begin at 7 p.m. weekdays and has produced such great champions as Armbro Feather, Roses Are Red (winner of the Jugette), Areba Areba (former Hamburg track record-holder), Nat Lobell and Jade Prince and many, many others.
Kopas, starting his 15th season at Hamburg, is especially high on several 2-year-olds, including trotting filly Armbro Island, a daughter of Jazz Cosmos, and pacing colts Keystone Khaki and Opopka Chief.
He also likes the 3-year-old colt colt Beaudonnel, who is from the last crop of Super Wave, the first "big horse" Kopas trained and drove.
Jaguar Spur, with Delevan's Bill Fahy driving, won the $200,000 final of the George M. Levy Series at Yonkers in 1:55 2/5 , his third win in a row. The win evened Jaguar Spur's score with the world record holder Matt's Scooter, who finished fifth, at 2-2. . . . Buddy Gilmour drove Armbro Feather to her third win in a row at Yonkers, taking a $20,000 open handicap feature for fillies and mares in 1:57 4/5 , despite racing parked out the entire mile. . . . Bays Fella, owned by the Par Birdie Stable of Hamburg, returned to action at Vernon Downs and won a $5,000 handicap pacing feature in 1:56 1/5 , his first win in three starts this year. He beat Stage Door Stevie, Vernon's 1988 Horse of the Year. Sam Fella, owned by Barry Snyder of Irving and driven by Silver Creek's Richie Mays, was third. . . . Mostly Penny, now trained by Buffalo native Gerry Sarama, won a $6,000 pace in 2:01 3/5 at Yonkers. . . . Precedent, a 3-year-old filly owned by Frank Delia's Cole Ridge Farms in Orchard Park, finished second to Witsend Cinny in a $35,000 division of the New Jersey Sires Stakes for filly pacers at the Meadowlands Thursday night. The mile went in 1:55 2/5 . . . . Also at the Meadowlands, Camtastic, driven by John Campbell, won the $30,000 Open pacing feature in 1:52 4/5 . Camtastic is entered in the $100,000 Battle of Lake Erie June 3 at Cleveland's Northfield Park racing against Jaguar Spur and Matt's Scooter.
North Tonawanda's Ray Schnittker, Herve Filion and Joe Marsh Jr. each won a race as U.S. drivers swept three races against Soviet reinsmen Friday night at Yonkers in the opener of the America vs. Russia eight-track series, which will be at Buffalo Raceway June 2.
Schnittker won with Foolish Willow in 2:00 4/5 .
"It went just like I thought it would," said Schnittker. The best Soviet effort was two second places by Nandrei Lipatnikov.