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Man Loses $1.5 Million Bet After His Kentucky Derby Horse Finishes Second

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Man Loses $1.5 Million Bet After His Kentucky Derby Horse Finishes Second

A famous sports better lost a staggering $1.5 million (£1.2m) at the Kentucky Derby after his horse came in second place at the very last minute.

Jim McIngvale, otherwise known as Mattress Mack, made headlines last year when he lost $2.4 million (£1.9m) on one horse at the Kentucky Derby in Louisville, Kentucky. Such a loss might be enough to put even the most avid betters off the hobby, but not Mattress Mack.

The 71-year-old returned to the derby this year to place another bet, this time on the horse Epicenter, in the hopes his participant would come out on top.

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As the lack of celebration in this video will tell you, that was not the case:

Prior to the race, McIngvale told Bleacher Report he was 'thrilled with the selection of Epicenter', adding: "He's gonna be the favourite for the Kentucky Derby. I love Epicenter. He's a great horse. I like his jockey a lot.

"I really like Steve Asmussen, because he is a Texan, and his family has deep Texas roots to the horse racing business. They've been at it for generations. Great people, and I think Steve's due to win the Kentucky Derby." 

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Epicenter looked destined for success as the race started to draw to a close on Saturday (7 May), but just before the finish line he was overtaken by the embodiment of a dark horse named Rich Strike, whose odds were 80-1. Epicenter ended up finishing in second place, followed by fellow betting favourite Zandon.

In an interview with the Review Journal following his loss, McIngvale admitted he 'thought [he] was home' with Epicenter.

The better revealed he lost a total of $2.6m (£2.1m) at the event, adding: “You win some and you lose some, and sometimes you get rained out. Gonna put my big boy britches on tomorrow morning and go back to work.”

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McIngvale's hefty bet came in a bid to reduce the risk on a furniture promotion offered by McIngvale's company Gallery Furniture, which offers customers refunds on purchases of $3,000 or more if the favourite horse won the Kentucky Derby.

The horse McIngvale's lost out to wasn't even added to the field until the day before, when another horse pulled out of the race. Rich Strike's trainer, Eric Reed, told CNN he 'couldn't even breathe' when his horse made it into the race, and said Rich Strike had been 'training so good all year'. The win marked Reed's first in the derby.

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Featured Image Credit: @br_betting/Twitter

Topics: News, US News, Viral, Sport, Money

Emily Brown
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