Man turns $1 horse racing bet into $1.97 million

Updated: February 23, 2008, 11:28 AM ET

LONDON -- A bettor has won $1.97 million after placing a wager for just $1.

The man, thought to be in his late 50s or early 60s, placed the bet in bookmakers William Hill's shop in Thirsk, northern England, on Friday, predicting the winners of eight races in an accumulator wager at total odds of 2 million-to-1.

His first winner was an 8-1 chance called Isn't That Lucky, the last a 5-2 shot named A Dream Come True. The others were priced at 10-1, 15-2, 11-2 (twice), 4-1 and 7-2.

William Hill spokesman Graham Sharpe told Reuters on Saturday: "When he was told what he had won he visibly blanched -- and then said he would have to go and tell his wife."

The man only learned of his good fortune when he called in at another William Hill shop in nearby Bedale to place five $1 accumulator bets on Saturday's racing.

William Hill are now waiting for him to return and claim his winnings.