When thinking of gambling, whether for fun or professionally, one obvious question comes to mind, “What is the biggest bet ever on? In the world of sports betting, some people can win small amounts of money occasionally, while others win millions.
List of biggest bets in history
Let’s look at some of the biggest bets ever won across different sports, such as basketball, American football, rugby, cricket, and horse racing.
Archie Karas’ (Greek Gambler) $17 Million
Archie Karas’, also known as the Greek Gambler, was fortunate enough to bag home $17 million from the $10,000 he wagered on top-up poker. Interestingly, he had borrowed the money he used to bet because he was dead broke. His previous unlucky streak was all repaid after winning $17 million.
Anonymous – $14 Million
Another gambler took home $14 million after wagering on a game between the L.A. Dodgers and the Houston Astros in World Series games that took place in 2017. This was the biggest MLB baseball bet ever won. Rumor has it that the punter was below 30 years old. The mammoth win must have changed his life completely.
It is not uncommon for winners to choose to stay anonymous after a huge win. This is because SportsBooks tend to kick out winners who have profited in the past amongst other reasons.
Billy Walters – $3.5 Million
Billy Walters is well known for his winning stream spanning over a decade. In 2010, he hit the headlines for winning $3.5M when the New Orleans Saints were playing against Indianapolis Colts at the Super Bowl XLIV. Apart from his record-breaking winning streak, Walters proved to millions that sports betting requires skill.
Steve Whiteley – £1.5 Million (About $18 Million)
Steve Whiteley is another gambler that proves that sometimes luck is all you need to become a millionaire. Whiteley was incredibly lucky to win $18 million after using only $2.5 to wager on horse racing. Funny enough, the 61-year-old Whiteley was there to use a free ticket for horse races. Who knew he would be going home a millionaire?
James Adducci – $1.2 Million
Talk of bold moves from punters; James Adducci was confident to wager a whopping $85,000 on Tiger Woods to clinch the 2019 golf masters title. At the time of placing his wager, it had been over a decade since Woods won. Luck was on Adducci’s side as Woods broke the title during that championship.
Fred Craggs – £1 million (About $1.25 Million)
Fred Craggs earned a name for himself in the world of sports betting after placing a bet value of £0.50 only to win £1 million. He wagered on horse racing, and the 50 pence he used got him seven figures in return.
What’s even more surprising is that Craggs wasn’t aware he was winning until he went back to the bookmarker.
Mike Futter – £800,000 (About $1 Million)
Mike Futter was famous in 2003 not only for winning $1 million but also for betting on his own horse, Monty’s Pass. Futter was proud of his horse, and he didn’t forget to mention that this was one of the bets he would never forget.
Indeed, this stands to be classified as one of the biggest bets ever won.
Charles Barkley – $800,000
Charles Barkley, an NBA champ, wasn’t new to big wins, but one of his largest bets was when he wagered $500,000 for the New England Patriots to win the Super Bowl. This was unexpected, given that his chosen team was a 14-point underdog compared to the St. Louis Rams in 2002.
Anonymous Punter – £585,000 (About $731,000)
While this anonymous punter might not have pocketed more than a million shillings, the interesting thing is that the gambler won £585,000 on a £0.80 bet. The Gambler accurately predicted 19 games with total odds of 683,738/1. How crazy is that?
Darren Yates – £550,000 (About $688,000)
In 1996, Yates earned immense fame in horse racing. He wagered just £62 on jockey Frankie Dettori to win all seven rides for that day. While it might not have been thought possible, Yates was lucky to make such an accurate prediction.
Mick Gibbs – £500,000 (About $625,000)
Mick Gibbs lands among the biggest bets ever won after wagering only £0.30 on a 15-leg accumulator bet with a total odds of 1,666,666/1. He predicted all 15 games correctly, even the 2001 Champions League final between Bayern and Valencia that later ended in penalties.