Barakey’s ranking as Perth’s top sprinter was never in doubt against young pretender Smoko on Saturday.

The Group 1 winning son of Key Business sat outside the rookie and then lengthened to a comprehensive victory in the LR Goodwood Sprint (1300m) at Belmont.

Barakey (7g Key Business – Dance Hi by Ideal Planet) had not been seen in public since an unplaced run behind Buffering in the G1 Winterbottom Stakes in November. Vets subsequently found he was suffering from a virus.

The gelding’s only other loss in 15 starts was in last year’s G1 VRC Newmarket at Flemington when he pulled up with a fractured knee. “He’s only had a couple of fast gallops and two trials leading into today’s race,” trainer Jim Taylor said. “He’s a great galloper – we will set him for another crack at the Winterbottom.”

Barakey is a brother to LR Belmont Oaks winner Ifestio and Taylor prepares him for owner-breeder Aristos Mihalopoulos andTerry Zeppos. Their dam Dance Hi won the 1995 Champion Fillies at Ascot and another of her foals – Hi On Love (Love a Dane) – won the 2005 Champion Fillies.

Winning sire Key Business (Success Express) is in retirement aged 24 after standing at Rangeview Stud from 1995 until covering his last mare in December 2012.