Superdraws and Rollovers
What is a Superdraw?
A superdraw is a normal National Lottery draw (either Saturday or Wednesday) where the prize fund is topped up by the lottery operator to a guaranteed minimum value. The top-up amount is determined once the original jackpot prize pool is calculated. 5% of the stake of a lottery ticket is put into a Super Draw reserve fund, and this is put into the jackpot prize pool.
Where the money comes from for a Superdraw
The rules say that the value of the Superdraw prize can be a maximum of the average of the four highest jackpot pools out of the last five normal draws, after rounding down to the nearest £100,000. This prize can either be added to the jackpot prize pool or can be doubled and set as an absolute jackpot prize pool. Camelot must obtain permission from Oflot (the lottery regulator) to hold a Super Draw with an agreed prize up to the maximum permissible as detailed above.
History of the Superdraw
The first ever Superdraw took place on Saturday 7th January 1995 (only the eighth National Lottery draw) with a guaranteed jackpot of £10 million. Disappointedly, the jackpot wasn't won and was rolled over to the ninth draw when an all-time record 133 jackpot winners shared the prize, so there was no Super-winner.
When was the first Wednesday Super Draw?
To boost the first ever Wednesday draw it was also a Superdaw This was on Wednesday 5th February 1997. For some reason the prize £9,999,999, just £1 short of 10m. The next three Wednesday draws were also Superdraws with jackpots of £10m, £7m and £7m designed to get the new Wednesday game off to a flying start.
When was the first Super Draw actually won?
This wasn't until the 2nd Super Draw (the 17th National Lottery draw) on Saturday 11th March 1995, where an additional £4m was added to the jackpot prize pool. 2 winners won £6.5m each.
Superdraws vs Rollovers
Originally, Superdraws used to prevail if a rollover and a Superdraw coincided. So the rollover prize money would be 'absorbed' into the total prize value of the Superdraw. However, since 8th January 2000 (the 42nd Superdraw), the rollover amount has been added to the Superdraw amount. It should now really be called a "Rollover Super Draw" because of the combined jackpot prize pool.
What is the highest number of consecutive draws, either Wednesday or Saturday
Camelot surprisingly tried to have a £5m guaranteed jackpot Super Draw every Wednesday between 11th June 1997 and 15th October 1997. If this plan had worked, there would have an amazing 19 consecutive Wednesday Super Draws! This did not happened because there were 3 Wednesday rollover draws during the 19-draw run, meaning that the longest consecutive Wednesday Super Draw sequence was actually the 10 draws between16th July and and 17th September 1997.
What are Bonus Draws?
Bonus Draws are occasional draws introduced by the Operators to mark special occasions. The first three, for example, marked the name change from "National Lottery Main Draw" to "Lotto". The next was to mark the Queen's Golden Jubilee.
Bonus Draws are only drawn in association with, and after, a 'normal' Lotto draw on a Saturday or a Wednesday. They take the same format as a Lotto draw (6 balls chosen from 49 possible), except no bonus ball is drawn.
If you have bought a ticket for the 'normal' Lotto draw, the same numbers will automatically be entered into the Bonus Draw for you.
Bonus Draws are played for the Jackpot Only. That means you can only win a prize by matching all six main numbers. If you match three, four or five numbers, you win nothing.