If one plays the “Lotto” lottery game and chooses the numbers 1-2-3-4-5-6, is that a wise choice? Have consecutive numbers ever won? How about 2-4-6-8-10-12?
Ah, you’re trying to beat the odds — and using a variation of your consecutive strategy in the Sept. 24 lottery we hit four of six numbers drawn (7-16-21-22-23-25) by playing 21-22-23-24-25-26, winning $53. Whee!
But that was just luck.
Our research on the Louisiana Lottery website (http://www.louisianalottery.com/lotto/tab/how-to-win) reveals that neither 1-2-3-4-5-6 nor 2-4-6-8-10-12 has been drawn in its entirety since Feb. 1, 1992, the first date available on the site’s search function.
Louisiana Lottery sold its first scratch-off ticket on Sept. 6, 1991, some 11 months after voters approved a constitutional amendment on Oct. 6, 1990, to create the lottery, with proceeds dedicated to the state’s education funding program.
So, has any full set of consecutive numbers ever been drawn?
The Lottery has never performed an analysis, says Kimberly Chopin, Louisiana Lottery’s director of communications, but the information is available to the public if they want to perform their own analysis.
“To determine if any series of six consecutive numbers, within Lotto’s field of 40, has ever been drawn, players can download a spreadsheet of all historic winning numbers on the corporation’s website to analyze,” Chopin says.
As for the best strategy …
“People often think that certain numbers are more likely to get drawn, but that’s not the case,” Chopin says. “The odds of winning are the same no matter what you choose.”
In fact, the odds to match all six numbers, no matter what the combination, are 1-in-3,838,380.
But you have a better chance of winning lesser prizes by matching five, four or three numbers in the draw. Those odds are:
1-in-18,816 to match five numbers (average prize $2,000).
1-in-456 to match four numbers (average prize $50).
1-in-32 to match three numbers (average prize a measly $3).
Our research also could find no five-number matches on either of your two strategies.
But there were a few more four-number matches.
Using the 1-2-3-4-5-6 strategy, you would have matched four of the numbers on:
April 15, 2000, from the 1-2-3-4-20-32 draw.
April 11, 2012, from the 2-3-4-5-9-24 draw.
July 11, 2010, from the 2-3-5-6-27-28 draw.
Using the 2-4-6-8-10-12 strategy, you would have matched four of the numbers on:
April 18, 2009, from the 2-4-10-12-19-30 draw.
March 9, 2013, from the 2-4-6-10-19-25 draw.
June 21, 2014, from the 2-4-8-12-23-24 draw.
If you are really curious, and highly ambitious, you can wade through every permutation of all the winning numbers and jackpots by downloading a pdf file at: http://www.louisianalottery.com/winning-numbers/pdf/lotto.
Send questions to Ask The Advocate, 7290 Bluebonnet Blvd., Baton Rouge, LA 70810; or fax to Ask The Advocate, (225) 388-0371; or email email@example.com.