06/09/2007 12:00AM

Barcola just misses track record


Barcola almost always is in front after the first six furlongs in his route races. Often he fades, as he did in the Grade 1 Donn Handicap won by Horse of the Year Invasor and his previous start in an optional claimer a month ago at Belmont Park.

Saturday afternoon at Delaware Park, however, the 4-year-old Barcola never stopped. Ridden for the first time by Kendrick Carmouche, Barcola ($25.80) repulsed a stretch challenge from

7-5 favorite Better Than Bonds to win the first stakes of his career in the $100,000 Brandywine.

Based in New York with trainer Mark Hennig, Barcola won for only the fourth time in 15 career starts. In his lone previous stakes try, Barcola set the pace and faded to seventh in the Feb. 3 Donn Handicap at Gulfstream Park.

Barcola's time of 1:41.56 for 1 1/16 miles was 0.04 of a second off the track record of 1:41.52 set by Lies of Omission in 1998.

After setting swift fractions of 45.71 seconds for a half-mile and 1:09.21 for six furlongs, Barcola was threatened by Better Than Bonds, who got within 1 1/2 lengths at the eighth pole. Barcola continued running hard, however, and was 2 1/2 lengths in front at the wire.

Better Than Bonds finished second, 2 3/4 lengths in front of Trapped Again.