Lotto: $55m in winnings still unclaimed

By Brendan Manning

Gary Ashton, owner of One Step Ahead, the shop in Three Lamps, Ponsonby which sold the winning $33 million Lotto Powerball ticket. Photo /  Herald on Sunday / Steven McNicholl
Gary Ashton, owner of One Step Ahead, the shop in Three Lamps, Ponsonby which sold the winning $33 million Lotto Powerball ticket. Photo / Herald on Sunday / Steven McNicholl

More than $55 million in Lotto prize money remains unclaimed following the biggest prize week in the game's history.

Last night's must-win $33-million jackpot has earned one lucky ticket holder a small fortune, while $22.6 million remains unclaimed from last week's Big Wednesday jackpot.

Saturday's winning ticket was sold at the One Step Ahead shoe repair shop in Ponsonby.

Owner Gary Ashton said he was yet to be told from Lotto headquarters when the ticket was sold.

Their store was closed today [Sunday], but that hadn't stopped a couple of hopeful punters trying to come in and check their ticket, he said.

"But we had to turn them away because we've got nothing set up ready. We had a couple of people just saying 'well done'."

Mr Ashton said he had "no idea whatsoever" who had purchased the winning ticket.

"We sold a lot more tickets than normal last week with the 'must be won' draw.

"We just don't ever find out unless they actually come in to the shop to check it.

"Hopefully it's one of our regulars, that'd be really nice."

However, he said the winner would probably be wanting to keep a low profile and would get in touch with Lotto headquarters directly.

The store had sold a share in six division one Lotto draws, "but this one eclipses it by a long way".

Mr Ashton said he was looking forward to the advertising the win would bring the store.

"A lot of people will come in because we're the lucky store. It's going to be quite interesting next week."

Lotto spokeswoman Emilia Mazur said the ticket remains unclaimed.

It was up to the winner as to when they decided to claim their prize, she said.

A sales representative from Giltrap Audi on Grey Lynn's Great North Road said they hadn't had any fresh millionaires in perusing the company's luxury vehicle fleet.

"Not unless they've kept quiet about it," the salesman said.

"I wish it was me, but it wasn't."

A waitress from Ponsonby Rd's SPQR restaurant said they weren't aware of any patrons celebrating a big win with expensive champagne.

"We do have our Veuve Clicquot magnum special on, so a lot of people have been buying the magnum champagne, but [that's] nothing out of the ordinary."

Meanwhile, the winner of the Big Wednesday jackpot is also yet to claim their prize.

It was bought from Pak'nSave Riccarton, one of the luckiest stores in the country, having sold 31 Lotto first division winning tickets.

The prize was made up of of $21,156,874 in cash plus a Lamborghini Gallardo, an Audi Q7, a Rayglass 2200 boat, a $50,000 Visa Platinum Card, $50,000 worth of travel and $675,000 towards a bach.

- Herald on Sunday

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