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One winning ticket sold for $1.05bn Mega Millions lottery jackpot

A customer fills out a Mega Millions lottery ticket at a convenience store in Northbrook, Illinois. Photograph: Nam Y Huh/AP

A customer fills out a Mega Millions lottery ticket at a convenience store in Northbrook, Illinois. Photograph: Nam Y Huh/AP

First published on Sat 23 Jan 2021 12.42 GMT

One winning ticket was sold in Michigan for the $1.05bn Mega Millions jackpot, the third-largest lottery prize in US history.

The winning numbers drawn on Friday were 4, 26, 42, 50, 60 and a Mega Ball of 24. The winning ticket was purchased at a Kroger store in the Detroit suburb of Novi, the Michigan Lottery said.

“Someone in Michigan woke up to life-changing news this morning, and Kroger Michigan congratulates the newest Michigan multimillionaire,” said Rachel Hurst, a regional spokeswoman for the grocery chain. She declined to comment further.

The top prize had been growing since 15 September, when a winning ticket was sold in Wisconsin. The lottery’s next estimated jackpot is $20m.

Friday night’s draw came two days after a ticket sold in Maryland won a $731.1m Powerball jackpot.

Only two lottery prizes in the US have been larger than Friday’s jackpot. Three tickets for a $1.586bn Powerball jackpot were sold in January 2016, and one winning ticket sold for a $1.537bn Mega Millions jackpot in October 2018.

The jackpot figures refer to amounts if a winner opts for an annuity, paid in 30 yearly installments. Most winners choose a cash prize, which for the Mega Millions game would be $776.6m before taxes and $557m after taxes, Michigan Lottery spokesman Jake Harris said.

“No way!” shopper Ryan Gabrielli told the Detroit News at the lucky Kroger. “We meant to play the lottery but forgot to.”

Harris said the ticket holder should sign the back and keep it in a safe place.

“I wouldn’t be surprised if the winning ticket holder held on to that ticket for a little bit, got their affairs in order, put together a financial plan and then reached out to contact us,” he said.

In Grosse Ile, a suburb south of Detroit, 126 people bought more than 600 tickets for the Friday draw but didn’t win the jackpot.

They hoped to win enough money to replace a publicly owned bridge on their island in the Detroit river that has been closed indefinitely for major repairs. The only other transportation option for the island’s 10,000 residents is a privately owned toll bridge.

“We used this to lift our spirits and dream a little bit,” said organizer Kyle de Beausset. “Of course we’re open to any help with the bridge, but I can’t imagine the winner would want to finance it.”

The odds of winning a Mega Millions jackpot are incredibly steep: one in 302.5m. The game is played in 45 states as well as Washington DC and the US Virgin Islands.

Third-largest prize in US history, growing since September, awaits Michigan winner ]]>