(Adds comments from son of gas station owner)
By Laila Kearney
MILPITAS, Calif. Feb 20 Lottery officials in
California were waiting on Thursday to hear from the holder of
the single winning ticket of a $425.3 million national Powerball
prize, a day after announcing the sixth highest jackpot drawing
in U.S. history.
The winning ticket in the nationwide game was bought at a
Chevron gas station next to a freeway ramp in the Northern
California city of Milpitas, about 40 miles southeast of San
Francisco. The retailer will receive a bonus of $1 million.
Alex Traverso, spokesman for the California Lottery, which
manages Powerball matters in the state as well as other games,
said he did not expect the holder of the Powerball ticket to
come forward on Thursday.
"The first day is usually that moment when they try to
figure things out, so I would be surprised if we would see them
today," he said of the winner, whose ticket matched all six
winning numbers in the Powerball drawing. They were 1, 17, 35,
49, 54 and 34, according to the Powerball website.
Many jackpot winners take a few days to consult with lawyers
and financial advisers before claiming their prize, said Cathy
Doyle-Johnston, a spokeswoman for California Lottery.
Parmeet Singh, 24, whose parents owns the retailer that
sold the winning ticket and six other California Chevron
stations, said a friend called him to say the winning ticket had
been sold at the Milpitas location.
"I thought he was lying, I thought no way, I was in shock,"
said Singh, who added that he believes the jackpot winner should
buy a Ferrari as a first purchase after taking the prize.
Singh said his father had flown to India on Wednesday to
visit family and was unaware his station had won the $1 million
The top prize for the lottery, which is drawn twice a week,
had rolled over and swelled 15 times since the last jackpot on
Christmas Day, said a Powerball spokeswoman in New York.
The winner can either opt to take the full amount as an
annuity paid over 30 years or a $242.2 million lump sum, lottery
In the last two years, Powerball prizes have increased
sharply due to a doubling in ticket prices to $2 and because
California, the nation's most populous state, has joined 42
other states, Washington, D.C., and the U.S. Virgin Islands in
playing the game.
The biggest winner in Powerball history, from Florida, took
home $590 million before taxes in May 2013.
A delivery driver who shared a $648 million jackpot with one
other winner in a Mega Millions lottery game in December bought
his ticket from a gift shop in San Jose, about 10 miles (16 kms)
(Reporting by Laila Kearney in Milpitas, Calif.; Writing by
Alex Dobuzinskis; Editing by Cynthia Johnston and Leslie Adler)