Sounds to me like you have a pretty hot horse on your hands already, I would not suggest you put this horse on barrels yourself AT ALL.
I am in no way trying to be mean or rude when I say this but you seem to be "cowboying" this horse and a little in over your head when it comes to any formal training.
I am not saying to be a good rider or barrel racer you have to have a lot of formal training but you most definitely need a good bit to train your horse to be a barrel horse if you wish anything productive to come out in the end.
I think the best advice I can give you is to continue to just ride him around, trail riding I mean. DO NOT introduce him to any kind of barrels at this point. Take some time and research some local barrel trainers and then find out the cost for their training. Save up the money and do the best thing for you horse and send him off to AT THE VERY LEAST get a good foundation in barrels but on him.
You would be surprised at the number of trainers out there that would be willing to strike a deal with you, training in exchange for a good worker around. It never hurts to ask.