Put punch into popular 6-spot!

May 16, 2005 3:02 AM

The 28-way 6-spot ticket, marked with eight groups of three, has long been one of the most popular way tickets around. With modern personal computers and computational techniques, it is much easier to compute directly the odds and percentages on way tickets like these.

It is also possible to evaluate these types of way tickets just as if they were straight tickets, and we can determine statistics such as frequency of win, size of average winnings and so forth.

Considerations of space (as well as the sanity of the GamingToday typesetter) preclude me from printing all of the possible catches and odds on this ticket. A few samples will have to suffice.

The ticket is marked using 24 numbers, and obviously the most numbers that you can hit on the ticket are 20 out of 24. There are only three ways to hit all 20 numbers, and here they are with their attendant odds for one:


3 3 3 3 3 2 2 1 779,390,683,909,209.70

3 3 3 3 3 3 1 1 14,029,032,310,365,770.00

3 3 3 3 3 3 2 0 21,043,548,465,548,660.00


The most common catches on the ticket (the catches that will come up most often as you play it) are the following:


Catch Odds


2 1 1 1 1 0 0 0 8.95

2 1 1 1 0 0 0 0 9.59

1 1 1 1 0 0 0 0 14.97

2 1 1 1 1 1 0 0 15.27

1 1 1 1 1 0 0 0 15.98


There are 158 different possible catches on this ticket, and given a standard keno pay schedule that pays for catches of 3-of-6 or better, 121 of the 158 catches pay at least a 3-of-6. In percentage terms, 76.5 percent of all tickets played will have some sort of winner, slightly better than three out of four tickets!

This fact alone probably accounts for some of the popularity of the 28-way 6-spot. Of course, many of these winners are for just a few dollars or less, so the next figure we look at is the percentage of winners of $28 or more. One ticket in every 14.8 provides a winner in excess of the amount wagered, or 6.75 percent of the tickets.

One ticket in every 283.21 provides a winner of $1,492 or more, and this is the real reason this ticket is played. The 28-way 6-spot provides a good chance of winnings in the $1,400 and more range.

One ticket in every 924,849 provides winnings in excess of $5,000, while winners of $10,000 or more are produced once every 7,439,526,596.95 tickets. It quickly becomes obvious that this ticket has a lot of mid-range potential, producing lots of winners in the $1,500 to $5,000 range, but that bigger payday is quite elusive.

In other words, to win up to about $5,000, this is one of the better tickets you can play, but if you want to win $50,000, try another vehicle!

On a scale of one to five spikes, with five being the highest, Lil gives the 28-way 6-spot a rating of 3 spikes:

There are, incidentally several other ways to play the 28-way-6, including eight numbers, marked 1-1-1-1-1-1-1-1, 11 numbers, marked 4-1-1-1-1-1-1-1, 15 numbers, marked 4-3-2-2-1-1-1-1, and 15 numbers marked 3-3-3-2-1-1-1-1.

My preference is for the old standby eight groups of three described above, though the king ticket with eight numbers total does provide more potential for very big winners with about half the mid-range potential.

Like I’ve said many times, decide first what your goals are, and then play the ticket that best addresses those goals.

Well, that’s it for now. Good luck. I’ll see you in line.