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All eight winning Scoop6 tickets worth £1.3m each have been claimed and £5m bonus is won 31/05/2014
Chris Cook
• Shop clients scoop jackpot thanks to horses that did not run
• Non-runner selections automatically went on winning favourite
• Bonus shared among three syndicates who pooled their tickets
• Craig Brazier loses but says: ‘I can chill out now’

The three betting shop punters who were made instant millionaires on Saturday have finally come forward, allaying fears that two of them may have missed the fact that they had made their fortune. The gamblers held three of the eight tickets which won the Scoop6 bet and shared an enormous pool, each landing more than £1.3m.

Two of the punters had reason to be grateful for an enormous stroke of good fortune, in that one of their selections became a non-runner. Under Scoop6 rules, such selections are then switched to the favourite, whichever horse that happens to be; as it turned out, the favourite in question came good.

Not every punter understands that the bet works this way and even those who do are not always careful about checking whether or not their horses actually took part. Until Sunday evening, it appeared that one of the winners, a Ladbrokes punter from Dublin, was going to miss out through ignorance, but he eventually came forward to collect.

One of the other punters, a 58-year-old credit controller from Dundee who staked £2 in a Paddy Power shop on the King’s Road in London, said he was on the point of crumpling up his ticket when he decided to check the day’s list of non-runners. “I was absolutely delirious,” he was quoted as saying in a press release from the bookmaker, having requested anonymity.

“When March wasn’t in the frame, I thought, oh well, that’s that. I don’t know why but, just before I binned the ticket, I thought I’d check the non-runners just in case. I’m glad I did.”

A third betting shop punter, a customer of Betfred, was among the Scoop6 winners, having also staked the minimum £2, according to the bookmaker. The remaining five successful tickets were held by three syndicates and two high-rolling users of Betfair.

The winners are eligible for a shot at the Scoop6’s bonus pool of more than £5m. To win it, or a share of it, they must pick the winner of Saturday’s most difficult race.

The win fund, having been scooped, will start again on Saturday, which would normally mean something like £250,000 in the pool. However, a Tote spokesman said there was hope that it could be double that on this occasion, following the excellent publicity generated by 12 weeks of rollovers and so many new millionaires, as well as a new record for the highest sum won by a single betting shop wager. The previous record was £1.1m in 2004, also set by a Scoop6 winner.

Top Boy victory at York hands Scoop6 £5.5m bonus to syndicates
The £5.5m Scoop6 bonus was won at York and will be shared among three of the syndicates that held winning tickets from the main bet last week. Gathered into a co-operative by the long-term Scoop6 player Bernard Marantelli, they included the 12-1 winner Top Boy among their three selections.

The betting shop punters who won last week missed out on the bonus after deciding to go it alone. Two of them remained anonymous. Craig Brazier, the wheelie bin cleaner from Mansfield who achieved sudden fame with his £1.3m windfall, got a run for his money from Tumblewind, who showed up well at halfway before fading into 11th.

“I can chill out now and enjoy the rest of my life,” Brazier said. “She came with a chance, but wasn’t good enough. It’s still life-changing.

“Congratulations to the syndicate who backed [Top Boy]. I couldn’t have had him as he’s let me down so many times on the all-weather.”

Marantelli said his syndicate’s £1.3m from last Saturday had not been enough to recoup its losses from the bet in the past three months, during the Scoop6’s record series of rollovers. However, their share of Saturday’s bonus means that a profit has now been achieved.

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