Be sure you are ready for this commitment. Training a barrel horse takes a lot of time, patience, and skill to do it correctly. Finding a trainer is a must. If you have never done this before, it is not feasable to think you can do it for the first time on an unpatterned horse all by yourself. It takes time to build up the knowledge and feel for training.
Next, I agree with Sierra. I would find the trainer and then see if you can find a nice, finished horse to learn on so you KNOW what it is supposed to feel like. Then have her help you with your horse along the way.
Also, when you say "Retired".....Do you mean he is older, or did you buy him from a school? Why was he "Retired" ?
Pssh.I didn't pick up the wrong lead
It's called a counter canter...
...A very advanced maneuver.