07/07/2003 12:00AM

Successful invasion for Kalfaari


EDMONTON, Alberta - Owner-trainer Clint Willson was in a jovial mood after watching Kalfaari dominate the field here in last Saturday's Spangled Jimmy.

Willson walked away with the winner's share of $25,200 and now he will have to decide what to do with Kalfaari, a 6-year-old gelding who has won his last seven starts.

"I don't know, I might go to Chicago or I might stick around here," said Willson.

"I'll see how he feels and we may decide to ship, or we may decide to stay here a while and run in the Klondike [July 26]. Apparently, he likes it here."

Kalfaari was the horse of the year in Manitoba in 2002 after an undefeated campaign that included three stakes wins. And he carried that momentum into this season by posting two more wins, including a stakes, before arriving at Northlands Park.

Believing the muddy track would be a factor, the locals sent off Kalfaari at a generous 5-1. And, if anything, the track appeared to work to his advantage as he handled the going easily.

Jockey Sean Evans had Kalfaari, a British Columbia-bred, in perfect position through the first half-mile of the one-mile race, just off the early lead of King Jeremy. Kalfaari powered through the final turn to take a one-length lead by the head of the stretch.

Favorite Sixthirtyjoe came with his patented charge down the lane and finished second, 2 1/4 lengths behind the winner.

"The mud was a concern before the race," Willson said, "and we didn't want him behind a bunch of traffic early on. The jockey gave him a perfect trip and everything worked out for the best."