Joe McGuire held two of those tickets. His hopes of a new life rested on Justonefortheroad, which finished sixth, and Escape to Glory.
Close to home it looked as though Joe could begin planning how to spend his winnings. He had picked the winner of the previous five legs of Scoop 6 and as Escape to Glory took a narrow lead with the winning post in sight, he sat on the edge of his sofa, sipped beer and prayed.
Joe reflected on his near miss.
“A furlong out and I thought I was going to win.”
But then, shock horror!
The horse that had led, but which had been headed by Escape to Glory, rallied.
Llanarmon Lad fought back and regained the lead. He went on to win the race at Thirsk by the official margin of a length and three quarters at odds of 16/1.
Joe says: “My brother was on the end of the telephone screaming, ‘You’re going to win, you’re going to win’; but then the horse ran out of petrol.”Joe’s approach to watching the races was the opposite of what mine would have been. He was walking the dog for the first four legs of Scoop 6. He saw the last two.
He says: “When the last leg came around I had to have a beer to calm my nerves. I was sat right on the edge of my couch.”
Joe, an ex jockey, placed the bet at his local bookies. Had he won it would have been the biggest win bet placed in betting shop history.
He said: “I picked the horses because I fancied them. A few had good form so I just went with my gut. I’m absolutely gutted, but that’s life. It’s still amazing to have five winners but I’m sad, it’s the closest I’ve ever come to a big win.”
Via VG TIPS I am always telling members that if they have a go at Scoop 6, remember, you can still have a nice return for a £2 stake should all your six horses be placed. Joe McGuire did win £1.700 on the place pot.
Enough to buy him a consolation dinner of a chicken vindaloo curry and “about ten pints of lager followed by two Irish coffees – just to take the edge off!.”
But Joe will always wonder what might have been. He will rerun that last race in his head several times. He may even watch it back over and over again.
I know what it’s like to come so very close to big winnings. I’ve been there Joe. I feel your pain.
What about you, dear reader?
Joe McGuire has to be the unluckiest punter of the century. Or do you know differently? Tell me your own hard luck story via the ‘Speak Your Mind’ section below.