LOUISVILLE, KY – A wager on a whim has led to a big windfall for some local charities.
Owego businessman Adam Weitsman turned a five-dollar Trifecta bet at the Kentucky Derby into a 75-thousand-dollar prize by betting on 80 to 1 long shot winner Rich Strike on Saturday.
It was Weitsman’s 4th time attending the Derby at Churchill Downs, although in the past he’s had a horse in the race.
This year, with no horse of his own, he decided to back the number 21, Rich Strike, because his party was seated at table 21.
Weitsman says few people were celebrating when the long shot came in.
“There was silence because nobody bet on that horse. It was just a fluke. If it wasn’t our table number I wouldn’t have bet on that horse. People were messaging me on social media and saying ‘Oh that was the most brilliant pick, you must know so much about horses.’ I really don’t have a clue. It was just meant to be. Some higher power wanted me to win so that I could give the stuff away,” he said.
After taxes, Weitsman will take home 60 thousand dollars which he has pledged to give to charities in Greater Binghamton and the Syracuse area.
He’s already decided on a 5 thousand dollar donation to the Greek Peak Adaptive Ski program.
Weitsman says other gifts will focus on agencies fighting hunger.