Most people know how low the odds of winning the lottery are; in fact, the exact odds are around 1 in 14 million. However, this year a man from south-east France defied those odds by winning the country’s ‘My Million’ lottery not once, but twice! In the space of 2 years, the winner bagged €2m, an occurrence that mathematicians suggest has odds of one in 16 trillion. In this article, we explore the lucky winner in more detail.
Like many lotto winners, the man opted to remain anonymous. However, it has been confirmed that the winning ticket was purchased from a newsagent in the Haute-Savoie region in south-east France. According to the newsagent, the man barely reacted upon realising his big win and almost appeared like he was used to winning. The winner won his first million in November 2016 but continued to play the My Million lottery each week. In May 2018 he scooped another jackpot, making him the first double winner of the My Million draw. According to French media, the man intends to continue playing the game each week in the hope of pocketing another win.
My Million is a smaller draw run alongside the main EuroMillions lottery game. The game is the French equivalent to the Millionaire Maker or Raffle draw we have here in the UK but is only open to French players. Players of the EuroMillions are automatically entered into the second draw with a ‘Lucky Dip’ ticket. According to mathematicians, the odds of winning My Million once is around 19 million to one, while the odds of winning it twice are one in 16 trillion. To put how unlikely these odds are into perspective, the odds of being struck by lightning twice are one in 20 million.
A couple from Scunthorpe are also amongst the double lottery winners. David and Kathleen Long won their first £1m back in 2013 and recently hit the jackpot again. As if they weren’t feeling lucky enough, the lucky couple also won their dream car in the EuroMillions Mega Friday draw a few weeks later. Apparently, David has a secret to success – he only plays the lottery when there are lots of prizes available. There were 100 prizes of £1million the first time David won, and 10 £1million prizes the second. After buying his ticket, he had a gut feeling that he was going to win.
Bulgarian property developer, George Traykov, also beat the odds when he won the EuroMillions for the second time in 2013. George won his first million back in 2011 and then bagged another £160,000 in the Millionaire Raffle in 2013. Though George beat odds of one in 438 million, the Essex-based property developer was disappointed that his win wasn’t even bigger. Apparently, the lucky man missed the £12 million jackpot by one number. After realising this, he joked that he “wasn’t really that bothered” about his smaller victory. He confessed to the Telegraph that nothing could compare to his love for skydiving. George explained that the first win enabled him to make a few changes in his life, including sending his daughter to private skydiving lessons. He was so laid back about the second win that he didn’t claim his prize until two months after the draw.
John and Karen Ord also won the lottery twice over back in 2012. Their double win occurred after accidentally purchasing two tickets instead of one. On his way home from work, John picked up a ticket at his local newsagents, not knowing this his wife had already bought one on the same day. The couple both used their favourite numbers on the ticket, which happened to be a combination of family birth dates. As five of these numbers plus the bonus ball were drawn in that evening’s Lotto draw, each ticket won almost £100,000. Experienced labourer, John, said: “It’s a fantastic feeling. Our two youngest boys are really excited but our eldest is very cool about the whole thing and taking it in his stride. I love my work so I don’t want to give it up, but the win means that we can now sit back, relax and enjoy life.” Although the couple intends to invest their winnings wisely, they have planned a celebratory holiday for themselves and their four sons.
For most people, winning the lottery is a once in a lifetime experience. However, the lucky winners above have defied the odds and proved that you have to be in it to win it. While winning the jackpot may seem near enough impossible, it has to happen to someone. With tickets now available online, entering the game is easier than ever. To purchase a ticket online, all you need to do is create an account on the National Lottery Website. If you’ve got a smartphone or tablet, you can download the National Lottery App to enter the game whilst on the go. If you’d rather play with a physical ticket, pick one up from your local newsagents, post office, or supermarket. As always, it’s important to note the addictive nature of gambling. Consider your financial situation before purchasing a lottery ticket or setting up an online account. When using the National Lottery app, it’s possible to set a weekly spending limit to ensure your outgoings don’t get out of hand. This simple step allows you to gamble your disposable income with peace of mind.