This modest gas station sells the most winning Illinois Lottery tickets in Chicago. Owner George Thomas, inset.
Should you buy your tickets from this popular winning store in Chicago? What gives it the edge over any others in the city?
Ricky Patnam, a clerk at the Citgo at 8258 S. King Drive, may have the answer for winning the Illinois Lottery: "If you want to win, you have to play."
“It’s a lucky shop,” said Patnam, a clerk who has been working there for eight years told DNAinfo.
The auto repair and gasoline station that sits at Martin Luther King Drive and 83rd Street is the top seller of winning lotto tickets in Chicago, and among the top 25 retailers of lotto tickets in the state of Illinois.
"We sell more lotto tickets and instant [scratchers] than gasoline," said Patnam.
The Citgo has sold five big-ticket winners — for $20,000 or more — totaling more than $350,000.
The Shell station at 3181 N. Milwaukee Ave. in Logan Square took second place.
The second-highest winning ticket sellers, the Shell station at 3181 N. Milwaukee Ave. in Logan Square sold four winners, including a $250,000 Lucky Lotto ticket, totaling $450,000.
Third place went to McKinley Park Shell at 3501 S. Damen Ave. which also sold four winners.
A McKinley Park Shell at 3501 S. Damen Ave. also sold four winners, including a $1 million Super Cash instant ticket. It's sold more than $1.2 million in winners.
In all, 17 stores have sold three or more big-ticket winners since June 2010, according to the DNAinfo Chicago analysis, which looked at winners of dozens of Illinois Lottery games.
Over the years, Patnam has sold many of the winning tickets, including a $100,000 prize.
Any lottery store in Chicago will give you the same chances of winning.
“After someone wins, they smile and give us a thumbs-up, letting us know they’ve won and leave,” Patnam said. “They don’t make a big deal about it.”
Patnam can't explain how his customers have been so lucky. But we say there's no such thing as a lucky store. The lottery is a numbers game, and it's true of the stores that sell tickets too.
Often the stores with the high proportion of winning tickets also have a large number of customers buying tickets.
OUR TAKE: Don't depend on any 'lucky' store. Their success is volume... big queues of eager players. And just like using my Silver Lotto System, a bigger volume increases the chances of winning. In fact, there is no such thing as a lucky shop.
If you play in a so-called lucky store in your town, you won't be any luckier than if you played at another shop with the least number of ticket sales. Understand how the figures work and don't be fooled. Use a System that works, not a place.
HOW TO WIN THE LOTTERY:
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