Unichem Stortford Lodge Pharmacy in Hastings is officially the luckiest Lotto shop in the land, with 43 first division winning tickets sold there to date.

Figures revealed yesterday showed it came in ahead of Pak'N Save Riccarton in Christchurch and Nelson's Richmond Night 'N Day, with 32 first division wins each, to take the top title.

Could tonight's $38 million jackpot see it continue its winning form, which has amounted to more than $27 million for lucky punters?

Kiwis around the country were snapping up tickets this week, and the Hastings' pharmacy was no exception.


Lotto manager Nanette Woodham said ticket sales had been constant throughout the week, and she expected that would peak this morning.

"I imagine it's going to get pretty manic as it always does with the biggies."

Andrew Spence of Andrew Spence Pharmacy in Onekawa, which was listed as the third luckiest Lotto shop in Hawke's Bay, said momentum had been building through the week with queues of hopeful jackpot winners extending out the door and beyond.

"Everyone is excited and looking to be part of it - there's a lot of tickets and dreams going out that door."

To cope with the anticipated demand he said extra staff had been brought in and the business hours extended to make sure everyone who needed a ticket had the opportunity, he said.

Lotto spokeswoman Emilia Mazur said that although these stores had a lucky reputation every ticket had the same chance.

"We know these stores will be busier than usual with players hoping some of their previous good luck will rub off.

"Every year a different store sells a winning Powerball ticket. This year there have been big Powerball wins in Timaru, Ohakune, Tauranga, Ashburton, Dunedin, Hamilton and Kawhia - so there's been luck all over the country."

Only 12 players in the history of Powerball have won a prize more than $20 million.

"If a single player is lucky enough to win the top Powerball prize on Saturday night - it will be the single largest prize ever won in New Zealand," she said.

Hawke's Bay's luckiest Lotto shops
Number of first division winning tickets sold for Lotto Family (Lotto, Powerball and Strike) and Big Wednesday.
Unichem Stortford Lodge Pharmacy - 43
Countdown Napier - 16
Andrew Spence Pharmacy - 14
Taradale Superette - 11
Denton Wyatt Bookshop - 10
Raureka Lotto & Superette - 10
Village Lotto and Gifts - 10