You don't need to wager big in order to win big, and we look at some of the lucky punters who have placed small stakes to win big payouts!
We all love to hear tales of punters beating the bookies, even more so when the initial bet outlay is small but the returns are massive!
In every betting shop up and down the country, at trackside and even in the livingroom, there are punters who can regale anyone who will listen to tales of their big win or their near-miss on a fortune that could have changed their life.
Here we look at a few lucky punters who’ve taken the bookies to the cleaners with some big wins!
1) Fred Craggs (Stakes: 50p, Winnings: £1million)
Back in 2008, Fred Craggs placed the princely sum of just 50p on an eight-horse accumulator encompassing selections at three meetings – Sandown, Wolverhampton and Dubai – and watched as all eight selections went on to win, landing him a monster £1million.
The eight-horse roll-up was started off with first winner ‘Isn’t That Lucky’, trained by Jonjo O’Neill and ridden by Richie McGrath, who scored at odds of 10/1.
As the winners rolled in and the winning pot grew, the final leg of the accumulator, Dean Ivory’s ‘A Dream Come True’ sealed the deal and lived up to her name by going in at odds of 2/1 at Wolverhampton under Patrick Hills to close out a 2,000,000/1 accumulator.
Jonjo O'Neill's Isn't That Lucky got the ball rolling on Fred Craggs' big win. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)
2) Darren Yeats (Stakes: £59, Winnings: £550,000)
Mr Yeats’ big win came amid one of horse racing’s finest moments when Frankie Dettori booted home all seven winners at Ascot back in 1996.
Frankie’s ‘Magnificent Seven’ returned at odds in excess of 25,000/1 and landed Darren a whopping payout of £550,000 after the punter had staked £59 on the feat which saw bookmakers ravaged for more than £40million.
3) Mary Bolton (Stakes: £200, Winnings: £500,000)
Yeats wasn’t the only big winner to take advantage of Frankie’s seven winners. Mary Bolton had travelled to London from Somerset with her husband to celebrate their wedding anniversary.
They would go their separate ways, however; John would head to Ascot, while Mary would enjoy a trip to the shops. But, with an anniversary present of a Ladbrokes bet, Mary would perm Frankie’s seven mounts and top the bet with a £5 each-way accumulator to land the mother-of-three £500,000. Had the bookmaker not capped her liability, she would have scooped almost £900,000.
Conversely, Mary’s husband John failed to back a winner on the day!
4) Steve Whiteley (Stakes: £2, Winnings: £1.45million)
The North Devon heating engineer was certainly warmed up when he scooped a monster £1.45million for just a £2 outlay when landing the rolled-over Tote Jackpot at Exeter in March 2011.
Mr Whiteley, who attended the free race day wasn’t, by his own admission, a horse racing man and only attended a couple of meetings a year.
Initially he had taken multiple selections in the early races, but on realisation that he would have to fork out £32 for his bet, he scrapped his slip and settled for a single line. The cumulative odds on all six winners was 358,639/1.
The final leg of his jackpot win was landed by Lupita at odds of 12/1. Trained by Derrick Scott, it was the horse’s only win over hurdles in 26 starts, and the horse never won another race after. He could finish only seventh at Chepstow on his last outing back in April.
5) Agnes Haddock (Stakes: £2, Winnings: £688,620)
Perhaps the most famous winner of the Scoop6 bet, the one-time cleaning lady scooped a monster £410,332 for just £2 when selecting the requisite six winners required back in 2007 and also the winner of the following week’s bonus race which netted her a further £278,288 for an overall payout of £688,620.
Agnes would use coincidences to select her six winners, and the system certainly worked as she selected 9/4 winner Taranis to land the bonus race and secure the massive payout. Taranis wore the number 13 number-cloth, and Agnes was born on the 13th!
Agnes would later set up a syndicate, and two years after her big win she was in the Scoop6 money again when the group landed a share of £503,004.
Taranis landed the Scoop6 bonus race, netting Agnes Haddock a combined payout of £688,620. (Photo by Julian Herbert/Getty Images)
6) Anonymous Punter #1 (Stakes: £1, Winnings: £350,000)
An anonymous father-of-two landed more than £350,000 on a £1 accumulator in 2011.
The punter from Glasgow placed his £1 roll-up on seven horses via William Hill’s website, and all seven duly obliged. It was a regular bet for the punter who had gone close a number of times, but always had one or two to scupper him.
Refusing to believe the big payout, the punter had to have the odds calculated by his son who confirmed the payout was correct.
7) Anonymous Punter #2 (Stakes: £15.84, Winnings: £209,731)
Two years later, another anonymous punter – this time in the Home Counties – wagered £15.84 on small-stakes accumulator bets in four-folds and upwards for 1p units on eleven horses with bookmaker William Hill.
The punter, whose selections ran at Newmarket, Salisbury and Hamilton managed to find some big-priced winners at odds of 10/1, 11/1 and 25/1 to help boost his winnings.
The punter only managed to land eight wins from his eleven selections, but the way the bet was structured saw him win big, and one of his accumulators saw a payout of £111,294p, while other assorted accumulators brought the punters’ winnings up to a huge £209,731 collectively.
8) Anonymous Punter #3 (Stakes: £2, Winnings: £411,959)
Early this year, a Nuneaton punter wagered just £2 to play the Scoop6 and duly landed a whopping £411,959.
The punter, who chose to remain anonymous, would have the chance to land a further £878,564 in the bonus pool after his winning ticket was the only one to have selected all six winners the previous week.
However, he selected 20/1 shot Brother Brian in the bonus race, who could finish only fourth behind Brave Vic. The horse won his next two starts, scoring at Cheltenham at April and again on his seasonal debut earlier this month when beating Utopie Des Bordes at Kempton.