The Powerball numbers drawn Wednesday came up empty, as far as the top jackpot was concerned, for the eighth straight drawing. The jackpot in the $2 lottery game now shoots to an enticing $128 million for the next Powerball drawing, to be held Saturday.
The next Powerball jackpot is only the second in the nine-figure range since February 19 when the one winner hit the jackpot for a staggering $425 million prize. But since then, remarkably, there have been two more jackpot winners, meaning that the big prize has not had time to climb into the nine-figure range.
Until Wednesday’s $110 million drawing.
With no big winner there, the jackpot rolls over, and upward, increasing by $18 million. Jackpots can climb quickly once they hit the magical nine figure range. The February 19 jackpot, the sixth-largest jackpot in U.S. lottery history, took just nine drawings to hit that point once the figure cracked the $100 million threshold.
In fact, in that run-up, there were only 15 drawings before the jackpot hit the $425 million sum. With eight drawings since the last winner, Powerball could now be looking at another quick climb into record-setting territory.
With ticket sales remaining modest, the chances of a jackpot winner also remain low, allowing for a fast ascension to the stratosphere. Wednesday’s Powerball game sold 16,547,603 tickets, the most since the March 22 drawing sold 16,032,428.
That drawing produced one winning ticket for its $96 million jackpot.
Wednesday’s Powerball game did create two new millionaires, however — at least millionaires before taxes. One ticket sold in Georgia and another in Massachusetts matched the first five numbers, but not the Powerball number. Neither ticket buyer purchased the Power Play option, so each ticket is worth a flat $1 million prize.
While the odds of winning the Powerball jackpot are a rather improbable one in 175,223,501, the odds of hitting the first five numbers are considerably better — a relatively favorable one on 5,153,633.
The odds of hitting four of the first five numbers plus the Powerball number are even better — though frankly, still remote: one in 648,975. That combination earns a $10,000 prize and on Wednesday, 20 tickets beat those odds, of the 531,972 winning tickets overall.
Your may be one of them! Check your Powerball ticket against these numbers, drawn at 10:59 pm in Tallahassee, Florida.
34 — 39 — 42 — 44 — 59 Powerball 8
Saturday’s Powerball jackpot carries a single-payment cash value of $74.9 million.