‘I won $85m lottery and now I’m billionaire – I spotted past winners’ mistakes’

A Powerball winning personal trainer has gone from millionaire to billionaire after refusing to splurge on luxuries.

In 2005, Brad Duke won a whopping $85million (£67million) – but that was just the start of his fortune.

In the initial aftermath of his win, Brad didn't splurge his cash on fancy items like sports cars or a mansion.

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Instead, he decided to box clever and hold off with frivolities in order to make his money work for him.

He told CNN in 2007 that he was planning to invest his money, channelling $45million into low-risk ventures, $35million into high-risk assets, and another $1.3million in the Duke Family Foundation.

He warned: "If you accept that cheque, you accept an amazing responsibility to yourself and whomever you decide to include in it.

"I was quiet about winning for a month before I decided to come out.

"During that time, I was getting as much research as I could on existing lottery winners and what their stories were."

Brad said he found that most "lose all the money within a short amount of time" whereas he "wanted to be worth about 10 times as much."

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Instead of the shopping spree, Duke opted to build a team of trustworthy financial advisors, who helped him reach his $1billion within 12 years.

But Duke didn't completely rule out a few big purchases, as he bankrolled a trip to Tahiti for 17 lucky friends.

The longtime manager and cycling instructor at Gold's Gym, where he continued to teach for more than a year after winning, also bought himself more than a dozen new bikes.

Duke still looks back on his days working at the gym fondly.

"I really didn't think things could get better for me (at the time)," he told KTVB in 2022.

"I remember thinking that and within that week, this happened."

Duke said he was far from a mindless gambler, and had developed an intricate mathematical system for picking his numbers, before winning the jackpot.

In the run-up to his big win, Duke had already begun taking home smaller amounts like $150 or $500.


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