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Meet one of the NASCAR fans who bet big on the Daytona 400

Austin Dillon may have won at Daytona, but fans also won big around the country.

Austin Dillon may have won at Daytona, but fans also won big around the country.
image: James Gilbert (beautiful pictures)

Last weekend’s NASCAR competition was in full swing; First, the rain pushed the Cup Series race from Saturday night to Sunday morning. NASCAR was able to run the majority of the crash-laden race before one last Big One race took place just before a red flag for rain. When the last checkered flag flew a few hours later, it entered the top 10 without anyone expecting it. Of course, there’s no one, except for the likes of Jason Fellenbaum, whose high-risk sports bets have paid off well at times as high as $70,000.

Fellenbaum is a mail carrier from Lancaster, PA, with a wife and three children. He considers himself a regular but casual player of NASCAR Daily Fantasy, but he is not a big bettor; a few dollars here and there will do.

“I made that bet on Tuesday during my lunch break after watching last year’s Daytona Summer race,” he said, referring to his last successful $10 bet that Cody Ware, Landon Cassill and BJ McLeod will both finish in the top 10. “That race had a lot of carnage and numbers 77, 78 and 52 all finished in the top 10. So even though lightning is rare though. Attack twice, the chance of winning big is too tempting.

When I chatted with him on Sunday night, Fellenbaum was vacationing at a friend’s remote fishing cabin. He spent the day on the lake without television or WiFi and with cell phone service. Missing the race wasn’t a big deal – after all, he said he was “not at all” confident he would win in the end.

“This is a negative EV bet,” he explains. “It will lose most of the time, It’s a lousy bet.

“But sometimes negative EV is overvalued by opportunistic bets for me. Is this an unlikely outcome? Right. Can I afford to lose $10 for a $70,000 chance? Right!”

When he returned from fishing on Sunday afternoon, he spotted the red flag due to the rain – and noticed a very unusual top 10.

“I told everyone to just blow [my phone] up again if it actually completes in my favor,” he said. “After a while, I started getting tons of tweets and messages, then checking the charts.”

His reaction? “My immediate reaction was to just laugh. It’s certainly great and lucky.”

He’s not the only one to achieve great success. A podcaster posted a screenshot of a text message in which a listener bet $13.49 that Cody Ware, BJ McLeod, Landon Cassill and David Ragan would all finish in the top 10. That listener’s payout was $999,433.63 la.

Fellenbaum knows that a large portion of his winnings are going to the government in the form of a hefty tax bill, but he says he and his wife will “find the most sensible way to do it. I’m sure we could splurge a bit, maybe a Disney vacation or something, but honestly, saving a lot and having some cash on hand would be helpful. That is It’s a bit boring, but I bet it will. “However, sometimes, being boring is a good thing.

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