Fancy Dream; Lucky Draw
For more than a hundred years ago, horse racing had been complimentary with the lucky draw system in Hong Kong.
1872-02-22_3, a race named as the Stirrup Cup Griffin Subscription Sweepstake was reported by 《Hong Kong Daily Press》.
Especially cultural among the Chinese population, It became a very popular but unique format of co-relation with gambling and racing.
From the pool of tickets sold, a preliminary but smaller pool of tickets was drawn.
They randomly allotted to a batch of horses, some of which were to race in the sweepstakes race.
The ticket that corresponded to the winning horse in the race would be the winner of the sweepstakes.
Second and third prizes were awarded in a similar way, while the rest of the tickets drawn in the preliminary round were all awarded cash prizes.
Prizing of The Special Cash Sweeps were the most significant and carried the highest prize money, from several hundred thousands in early years to one million dollars later.
In 1950’s, people could buy a number of flats with one million dollars.
Sweepstakes often carried special names such as the Grand Spring Special Sweeps and the Grand Autumn Special Sweeps, referring to the time of the year when they were held.
There were also other ways to make some extra money from the sweeps, as people would buy tickets from the Jockey Club at HK$2 then resell them for HK$2.10 in restaurants.
The 10-cent profit was in those days enough to buy a bowl of congee with fried bread sticks. It is said that business was especially brisk for young female ticket sellers!