Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 21 December 2014

Mechanic Neil Trotter scoops EuroMillions jackpot after using Only Fools and Horses catchphrase, 'This time tomorrow I'll be a millionaire'

Car mechanic and racing driver Neil Trotter, with partner Nicky Ottaway,  celebrates his win in Dorking, Surrey where he was revealed as the man who scooped a £107.9 million jackpot on the Euromillions lottery.
Car mechanic and racing driver Neil Trotter, with partner Nicky Ottaway, celebrates his win in Dorking, Surrey where he was revealed as the man who scooped a £107.9 million jackpot on the Euromillions lottery.
Car mechanic and racing driver Neil Trotter, with partner Nicky Ottaway, celebrates his win in Dorking, Surrey where he was revealed as the man who scooped a £107.9 million jackpot on the Euromillions lottery.
Car mechanic and racing driver Neil Trotter, with partner Nicky Ottaway, during a press conference in Dorking, Surrey where he was revealed as the man who scooped a £107.9 million jackpot on the Euromillions lottery.

He may prefer hot rod racers to a three-wheeler Reliant Robin, but the unveiling of today's multi-million pound lottery winner has already prompted comparisons with Del Boy and his Only Fools and Horses rags to riches story.

Not only was the winner called Trotter, but he had also used a famous catchphrase from the show when speaking to his father on the day of his massive win.

At a press conference this morning at Wotton House in Dorking, Surrey, Mr Trotter, from Coulsdon, said he was so confident he would win a prize he had told staff at his father's office last Friday lunchtime that "this time tomorrow" he would be a multi-millionaire.

Mr Trotter, 41, scooped a massive £107.9 million  becoming the National Lottery's fourth biggest winner on Friday night .

The lucky winner, who runs a repair garage in Mitcham, south London called Chameleon Coachworks, said: "I've always thought I'd win big and I'd had a good feeling all week.

"On Friday evening we were sitting at home when I checked the time and thought the draw must have taken place by now.

"I took out my ticket to check the winning numbers and amazingly one by one they matched. I told Nicky, my partner, 'I've done it, I've won the lottery'. But she told me to shut up and to stop being an idiot.

"Apparently I turned white as a sheet and couldn't sit still, I kept walking round the house - I didn't know what to do with myself. I got her to check the numbers with me and she started screaming!

"Next we called my dad but he said I was being an idiot too and that I should stop drinking. But I hadn't had a drop. Even when we jumped in the car and drove round, it took him a while to realise we were serious. My dad's not often lost for words but he was on Friday night."

Neil and Nicky Ottaway, 33, his partner of eight years, finally headed for bed around 3am but had a restless night before calling Camelot first thing.

Mr Trotter is a self-confessed motor racing fanatic and came sixth last summer in the BMW Compact Cup as a newcomer.

He now plans to hang up his car mechanic overalls and follow his passion for British touring car racing.

He said: "I worked my last shift on Friday repairing and spraying other people's cars.

"I have a few phone calls to make to let people down but this is my time now. I'm taking time off and going to really enjoy following the British Touring Car Championships.

"It's my passion and I wouldn't mind a guest driver slot if I can find the right car. I was building one up until last week but I'm thinking of taking a rest from that too."

He is also planning to replace his old oil-stained Ford with a fleet of supercars.

"I drive a Ford Focus at the moment. It's always been reliable but the steering wheel is black from oil off my hands and it's time for an upgrade.

"There are a lot of stunning cars out there - I'm going to need a lot of garage space at the new house. I would love to own a Hyper car - that would be amazing. Something like the McLaren, although I'm not sure how easy they are to get hold of."

But first on the shopping list is a new home and it needs to include stables as well as those garages.

Ms Ottaway, who works as an accounts assistant, loves riding and would love to buy a new horse or even two, plus a horse trailer.

The couple also hope to holiday abroad - as soon as Mr Trotter has renewed his passport.

Mr Trotter is aware that some people may joke about his surname and becoming a millionaire.

He said: "Me and my dad thought we'd heard all the Only Fools and Horses jokes but I can see this is going to run and run. Still, being Trotters we were always going to be millionaires one day."

A National Lottery spokesman said: "We're delighted Friday's ticket-holder has come forward to claim this amazing prize."

"This massive win ranks fourth biggest on the National Lottery Rich list and is the first EuroMillions jackpot to be won here in the UK so far this year."

The sum could help Mr Trotter buy his own Greek island such as Omfori, being advertised for just over £41 million, and a Lamborghini Veneno, one of the world's most expensive cars at a cost of £2.4 million, and still have plenty left to spend.

Or he could splash most of the money in a single purchase to buy a 21-bedroom home in London's Mayfair, which is on the market for £90 million. Friday's winning numbers were 6, 24, 25, 27 and 30, with the lucky star numbers 5 and 9.

Though a life-changing amount the win ranks as only the fourth highest ever in the UK.

In July 2011 Colin and Christine Weir, from Largs, in Ayrshire became the largest jackpot winners in Britain when they scooped a massive £161million EuroMillions prize.

The second largest sum - £148m - went to Adrian and Gillian Bayford, from Haverhill, Suffolk, in August 2012.

The third biggest jackpot of £113m, in October 2010, was claimed by a winner who decided to remain anonymous.

However, even those enormous amounts were dwarfed by the biggest lottery win in history of $474m (£285.4m) in a US mega millions draw in March 2012.

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