Jordan Set For For Maitland ‘Blaster-Class’

THREE weeks ago, 65 year old Northern Rivers trainer Terry Jordan hadn’t stepped foot on Maitland Showgrounds, let alone raced at the Hunter Valley circuit.

Adam Dobbin

18 March 2019

THREE weeks ago, 65 year old Northern Rivers trainer Terry Jordan hadn’t stepped foot on Maitland Showgrounds, let alone raced at the Hunter Valley circuit.

Fast forward to Thursday night and the veteran conditioner lines-up the immensely talented Fernando Blaster as favourite for the Group 2 Ladbrokes Maitland Gold Cup Final (450m), winner of his heat last week in a rampaging 24.70 – the quickest of the five run-offs.

“The first time I’d been to Maitland was a few weeks back when I trialled Fernando Blaster after the last – the track wasn’t all that fast that afternoon and he trialled 24.94 so it made the 6 ½ road trip worthwhile,” said Jordan on Monday from his Ettrick base.

Victorious at 12 of his 25 starts, with prizemoney in the bank of $41,000, Fernando Blaster is owned by Sydney-based Merv Papworth who knocked back a cool $50,000 for the prodigious talent after just a handful of starts last September.

“I’m pretty sure Merv told me the other day that Fernando Blaster is the first city winner he’s had – we’re having a lot of fun with him,” explained Jordan.

“From memory that big offer came after he went fast at Lismore over the 520m last September – dogs like him don’t come around very often so when they do you need to make sure you hang onto them!”

A remarkable 29.61 heat winner of the Group 1 National Derby at Wentworth Park in January, Fernando Blaster has posted some blinding times at Northern Rivers tracks, as well as a flying 29.74 at Albion Park, a time recorded on February 21 – the start before his sizzling 24.70 Maitland Cup heat success last Thursday.

“I had the choice of going for the Young Guns which is on now at Albion Park or going to Maitland, I thought Maitland would suit him and the race was worth a bit more money as well,” added Jordan.

“I said to Merv that win, lose or draw, the trip to Sydney for the Derby would really bring the dog on and it did. He’s been beginning better and has just furnished into a real race dog now, nothing fazes him at all.”

Drawn box one for Thursday night’s showcase $40,000 to-the-winner finale, Jordan couldn’t be happier with Fernando Blaster’s inside draw, the same box the fastest qualifier negotiated for his emphatic heat success.

“I’d left the track so I asked Mark Wilcox to draw the box for me, I was pretty happy when he called and said I had box one – I guess I’ll owe him a few beers if we win,” added Jordan.

“In these big finals there’s very little between the runners so box draws do play a big part. My bloke doesn’t fly out of the lids but he has tremendous muster and a big heart, he had a whistle up the straight on Sunday and is ready to go. I’m very happy with him.”

Fernando Blaster, a son of Fernando Bale and Amy Lyndan, is from a litter that’s won 39 of their 108 starts at the imposing strike-rate of 39%.

“They’ve been a fantastic litter,” added Jordan.

“I went to Collision for Amy Lyndan’s second litter but there were complications sadly.

“She had a scan and there wasn’t any heartbeats with the pups so the vet went into take them out. When the vet went in one pup was found alive, a girl, which was a surprise as we thought we’d lost them all.

“It was sad to lose them but at the same time heartening they found one still alive. She’s 16 months old now and is coming along nicely.

“I won the Casino Cup back in 2008 with Gazza Shiraz and hopefully I can add a Maitland Cup on Thursday.”