Barrier Reef takes Big A's Whirlaway Stakes

Updated: February 2, 2008, 5:16 PM ET
Associated Press

NEW YORK -- Barrier Reef earned his first stakes victory, and Triple Crown consideration, with a half-length victory over Roman Emperor in Saturday's $109,000 Whirlaway Stakes for 3-year-olds at Aqueduct.

The gray colt ridden by Alan Garcia rolled into contention with a three-wide move on the second turn and continued on for his second win in four starts. The time was 1:44.47 for the 1 1-16 miles on the track listed as good.

Trainer Tom Albertrani will now point Barrier Reef toward the next major 3-year-old stakes at Aqueduct: the $250,000 Gotham on March 8.

"Every step of the way, I was confident," Albertrani said. "Going down the backstretch, I thought he was going to win. Roman Emperor gave him a great fight, but we had a little more left."

Owned by Darley Stable, Barrier Reef paid $12.80, $5.60 and $3.90. Roman Emperor returned $4 and $3.10. Texas Wildcatter paid $3.80.

Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press

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