The Powerball jackpot has shot up to $600 million and officials believe that the pot will get even larger before Saturday’s drawing. It is the largest jackpot in Powerball history, beating the 2012 record of $587.5 million.
The LA Times notes that the $600 million jackpot is the largest in Powerball history but it’s still a little shy of the Mega Millions record. In March 2012 the Mega Millions jackpot reached $656 million.
California Lottery spokesman Alex Traverso said: “I think it’s going to be really, really close … Every step of the way this jackpot seems to have mirrored that jackpot.”
The Powerball jackpot could surpass the Mega Millions record this Saturday but it will probably fall a little short. If no one wins on Saturday, however, the jackpot will grow to an incredible amount. One lottery official believes that the jackpot could surpass $1 billion.
Kelly Cripe, the media director for the Texas Lottery, told ABC that the Powerball jackpot would grow to at least $925 million if no one wins on Saturday. But due to the huge sum of cash in the pot, Cripe believes that the jackpot could soar past $1 billion.
Mary Neubauer, spokeswoman for the Iowa Lottery, said that it used to take several months for a jackpot to reach this size but it now it only takes a few weeks. Neubauer told the Washington Post: “It usually took a handful of months, if not several months, for a jackpot to reach this large amount … Now it’s achieving that within a handful of weeks. I think the redesign is achieving exactly what we had wanted it to achieve, which is the bigger, faster-growing jackpot.”
Of course, just because the jackpot is increasing doesn’t mean that you’re chances of winning are getting any better. The chances of winning the lottery still fall somewhere between impossible and almost impossible.