Second largest 1¢ megajackpot hits

Nov 13, 2007 6:17 AM

Last week, the second largest penny Megabucks jackpot in Nevada made Tony Pieper richer by $11,319,297.36.

Pieper won that amount at the Casino Royale & Hotel on the famous Las Vegas Strip. The largest ever penny Megabucks paid $18,799,414 at the Pahrump Nugget Casino on Jan. 31, 2007.

Pieper, from Dallas, Texas, comes to Las Vegas about 12 times a year to golf and play slots. He said the jackpot this morning made him miss his scheduled afternoon tee time.

The 42-year-old self-employed businessman said he invested an initial $40 into the slot machine and then decided to play another $40.

"The only difference this time," he explained, "is that I told my friend, who was watching over my shoulder, to step away from me. I told him he was bad luck. As soon as he started backing away, I pulled the handle and the jackpot hit. I knew something happened, because I looked up and the meter had reset. My friend was shocked when he saw what happened and started crying."

Pieper, who said he will share his winnings with his nieces and nephews, is returning to Las Vegas next week to attend a convention.

"Even though I’ll be in meetings and conducting business," he said, "I know I’ll find time to play the penny Megabucks again. Maybe I can make it two in a row."

Only the dollar denomination Megabucks has hit recently with the latest a $10.8 million Megabucks jackpot on Sept. 2 at Wynn Las Vegas. Both the penny and dollar Megabucks progressives have top jackpots that build from a base amount of $10 million.

All IGT MegaJackpots top awards are paid in annual installments upon verification, except MegaJackpots Instant Winners Jackpots, which are paid in their entirety upon verification.