Stefan Mandel: Guy who beat the lottery

Most gamblers and sharp advantage players laugh off the idea of making a decent amount from the lottery as the odds of your winning the lottery are around 1 in 292 million and you are more likely to win an Olympic gold medal, get struck by lightning or be eaten by a shark than win a lottery. So, the lottery is just thought to be relied upon by dreamers, grandmothers, and suckers to try and make money. But one guy, Stefan Mandel, won the lottery a whopping 14 times and got himself around $40 million in winnings.  Mandel relied on skill to win the lottery rather than sheer luck as that would not have allowed him to win this many times. He claims himself to be a weekend mathematician and was a native of Romania before moving to the west for a better life. Mandel focused on the state lottery and started looking for points and edges that could be used in his favor and win the lottery. He took the only help of his brain, fuelled by an ambition to change his life and he looked through mathematical concepts and theories in whatever free time he got. This allowed him to come up with a theorem called Combinational Condensation which was an algorithm that allowed him to guarantee a second-place finish in a six-number lottery.
This could be done by picking up any 5 of the 6 numbers and then buying all the tickets with the combinations that corresponded to those numbers. This made him 100% guaranteed to get a second-place finish which he was satisfied with. After figuring out this trick, he got the financial backing of a few of his friends who believed in his ability and bought the tickets and got a better sum than he had expected. They got first place and it got them about 30,000$ in winnings out of which Mandel got $5000 which was a huge sum of money in the country he was living in that time, Romania. This money helped him bribe his way out of the poor living conditions of his homeland and he moved around Europe for the next few years before moving to Israel and settling there. In the 80s, he moved to Australia and got a job as an accountant and invested in things such as gold and other precious metals while living a homely life. But his interest in the lottery was never gone and he started looking for ways to win the lottery which had 45 numbers and a few million combinations. This was a challenging task even for him but he got back to the books and found another algorithm. This algorithm was a bit more profitable; more complicated and somewhat of a secret but it helped him reduce the number of tickets needed to win from 8 million to 3 million. By this time, personal computers were easily accessible and he used one to work out the details and attract investors willing to make some money.
By using this algorithm, he got the first prize 13 times in a row and made the Australian authorities get angry and change the rules so that he could not beat the lottery there anymore. After that, he focused on the Virginia state lottery in the US as it had fewer number combinations which would cost him less. Still, he would have to invest $7.1 million to buy the required number of tickets and so the prize has to be a bit lucrative as well. Thus, he waited for the lottery pool to hit a big enough number and when one hit $27 million, he put his plan into motions and printed out 7 million tickets in 3 days. But, he could only buy around 5 million tickets until the drawing of the lottery and was still a favorite to win. And he won the first prize along with a lot of smaller prizes which amounted to a million dollars. This allowed him to make a handsome amount in winnings as he took around $1.7 million in organizing fees while the investors did not make that much. When he won, the US government inspected him and the Virginia lottery commission tried to find a way of not paying him but since he did nothing wrong or illegal, the authorities had to budge and hand him over his winnings. This prompted a change in the rules of state lotteries which made a similar strategy impossible to apply. He says that he does not like chance and thus would not do any random lotteries these days. You can also use your skills and win decent amounts of money while playing various gambling games online at