Kentucky Derby bettor turns $8 wager into big pay day

A Las Vegas bettor turned an $8 wager on the Kentucky Derby into more than $78,000 at The Mirage on Saturday after Country House was declared the winner, according to the casino’s sportsbook manager.

The gambler raked in the payday after placing two identical $4 superfecta bets that paid out $51,400 each -- or $39,065 after taxes, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported. Betting on a superfecta means picking the first four finishers of a race in the exact order. At the Derby, Country House won, followed by Code of Honor, Tacitus and Improbable. Maximum Security was disqualified after a review by the stewards.

KENTUCKY DERBY DISQUALIFICATION COST BETTORS MILLIONS OF DOLLARS

“It was a miracle,” Scott Shelton, the sportsbook manager at The Mirage, told the Review-Journal. “He must’ve been a saint in a previous life running into buildings to get babies or something for everything to happen for him to cash those tickets.”

Luis Saez rides Maximum Security, right, across the finish line first against Flavien Prat on Country House during the 145th running of the Kentucky Derby horse race at Churchill Downs Saturday, May 4, 2019, in Louisville, Ky. Country House was declared the winner after Maximum Security was disqualified following a review by race stewards. 

Luis Saez rides Maximum Security, right, across the finish line first against Flavien Prat on Country House during the 145th running of the Kentucky Derby horse race at Churchill Downs Saturday, May 4, 2019, in Louisville, Ky. Country House was declared the winner after Maximum Security was disqualified following a review by race stewards.  (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

Shelton added: “I don’t know if anyone else in the country bet $4 to win that super. To do it basically straight and have a horse come down so he can win, that was a miracle.”

The bettor wasn’t identified, but Shelton said the person was “in shock.” Shelton said a lot of people had Maximum Security winning and the line to cash a ticket soon dissipated after the controversial ruling that knocked Maximum Security out of the top spot.

Gamblers placed wagers totaling more than $6 million on Maximum Security to win the Kentucky Derby, according to Twin Spires – the online betting partner of Churchill Downs. The racetrack said total wagers on the Derby increased 10 percent to a record $165.5 million.

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As for the Preakness Stakes, BetOnline has Code of Honor at an 11-4 shot of winning, while Country House is listed at 3-1 and Tacitus and War of Will at 4-1.