Northern Monkey Punter

Awesome Annaf Plunders The Portland

16th September 2023

NMP members landed a big chop (+44 pts profit) at Doncaster's St Leger meeting as Annaf, advised at 14/1 (returned 7/1 at SP after coming in for strong support on the afternoon of the race), weaved his way through a crowd of horses under Rossa Ryan to get up late and land the prestigious five-and-a-half furlong sprint for Mick Appleby.

An extract from the bet reasoning for Annaf e-mailed to members read:

"He does come into the race with an official rating of 106, so must lumber top weight, but Steps won this off 108 in 2015, Oxted was 105 in 2019 (albeit a 3-y-o so not top weight after weight-for-age factored in), and Hurricane Ivor won it off 102 two years ago, so highly-rated horses have often prospered over the years.

Annaf has the best 2023 form in the race by a country mile courtesy of his third behind Bradsell and Highfield Princess in the King's Stand at Royal Ascot - a Group 1 - so his status as top weight is fully deserved.

The cynics may point to the fact he's 0-12 on turf and 5-10 on the AW and say he can't win on turf, but the reason he's not been winning on grass this year is because he landed an AW hat-trick for Appleby in the winter that saw his rating rise to 108 or so, so he's naturally been campaigned at Listed and Pattern level subsequently, rubbing shoulders with class horses all year. 

His Duke of York and Coral Charge fourths were both good runs, as was his King's Stand third and even his Sprint Cup run last weekend had some merit even though he was unplaced."

NMP members were advised to have a strong EW single on him on the Friday before the race and also double him with Baradar, who bolted up at Doncaster that day at 10/3 to tee up a nice double with Annaf the following day, from only a small stake. 

Author: Wayne Finter

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