Check those tickets, Alberta.
Someone in the western province is sitting on $70 million after their numbers appeared during the Lotto Max Jackpot draw on Oct.21.
As of Thursday, no one has yet to claim the windfall. At least nothing on the Western Canada Lottery Corporation’s website indicates as much. By law, most lottery winners must have their names published.
Regardless, an additional 63 Maxmillions prizes valued at $1 million apiece were also up for grabs in the historic Oct.21 sweepstakes. Together, the total prize pool was $133 million – the second-largest in the game’s history.
Certainly, winner-take-all formats have their place. But ultimately, OLG spokesperson Tony Bitonti told PlayCanada (via email) the diversified approach is more compelling to Canadians.
“This is the exact reason why Lotto Max was created – customers wanted a chance to win big jackpots but also wanted the opportunity to win more $1 million prizes,” Bitonti said. “That’s what happened.”
20 draws without a winner is a Lotto Max record
The biggest prize pool in Lotto Max history occurred on June 2021. At the time, $140 million ($70 million jackpot and 70 $1 million prizes) was at stake. To get there, it took 16 consecutive draws before making it to the jackpot winner.
This time, it took 20 draws – the most since the lottery game’s introduction in 2009.
Of note, the jackpot maxes out at $70 million. Thus, the main differentiator between the two historic draws was the Maxmillions prizes.
And the biggest share (11) of the Maxmillions prizes on the Oct.21 draw went to Ontarians.
According to Bitoni:
“Since the Maximillions kicked in on the Friday Sept.2 draw — that’s when the jackpot reached $50 million, and the Maxmillions begin – there have been 58 winning Maxmillion tickets sold around the province.
“Most are $1 million prizes, but some are worth $500,000 or $333,333 because they were shared with other winning tickets sold.”
OLG: Many Maxmillions tickets still outstanding
However, whether bettors will ever see that money remains to be seen. Winners have one year from the time of the draw to claim their prizes. Otherwise, the cash is gone.
Bitonti says it’s not uncommon for punters to do just that, forgetting about their purchases.
To that end, few winners from the Oct.21 draw have come forward thus far. Bitonti also noted that many $1 million winning tickets remain unclaimed since the Sept. 2 draw.
“Many people check their ticket right away after the draw and many don’t. So we urge all lottery players to check their tickets as soon as possible – its easy if they have the OLG App as they have a ticket-checker built into the App.”
Winning Maxmillions tickets sold in Kitchener, Toronto, Niagara and more
Most recently, a few more Maxmillions winners have claimed their prizes.
Michael Burfield (Munson, AB) is one example. He did a double-take at his local store before believing his fortune.
Antoine Beaini (Milton, ON) is another. The Ontarian remarkably won the Maxmillions prize for the second time in less than two years when he played the Sept.23 draw.
When it comes to the Oct.21 draw, Ontario players purchased winning tickets ($1 million) in the following regions:
- Nepean (two)
Beyond that, four other Maxmillions tickets – valued at $500,000 – were sold in Brampton, the Peel Region, St. Catharines and Toronto. However, in these cases, earnings are shared with someone in another province.
Finally, a $333,333.40 ticket was sold online at OLG.ca. The shared prize belongs to winners in British Columbia and Quebec.
Lotto Max draws take place Tuesday and Friday. Tickets cost $5.