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Question of the Week Archive (10+ years)

Does anyone remember the $988k Pick 6 Heist at Palm Beach JA in the mid 1980's?

The old wooden building housing the Palm Beach Fronton on 45th street burned down on Christmas eve in 1978 (a suspicious fire) and the fronton was rebuilt and re-opened somewhere around 1982 or 1983. They had a $2 Pick 6 jackpot that kept growing as nobody was hitting it. The pot got over $500k, and then a group of Florida professional gamblers pooled their money, covering all 262,144 possibilities for a $524,288 total bet. They got special treatment from the fronton and were allowed in to make the massive bet during the afternoon before the evening performance. There were about 6 mutuel tellers punching tickets for several hours. When they were done, the tote room even provided them a printout so they could ensure they had every combination covered.

This P6 syndicate had the only winning ticket that night and I believe the $2 winning payoff was something like $988k. I do know that local trifecta list player Randy Gallo was the mastermind of this Pick 6 syndicate. The whole deal left a bad taste in the mouth of the small players who build up the pool over a long period of time. This had a lot to do with the decline of Palm Beach Jai-Alai after this occurred.


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