Mattress Mack Loses $2.4M Betting on Essential Quality at 2021 Kentucky Derby

Blake SchusterSenior Analyst IIIMay 2, 2021

John Velazquez riding Medina Spirit leads Florent Geroux on Mandaloun and Flavien Prat riding Hot Rod Charlie to win the 147th running of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs, Saturday, May 1, 2021, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)
Jeff Roberson/Associated Press

Mattress Mack is officially on a cold streak.  

Houston, Texas retail magnate Jim "Mattress Mack" McIngvale, increased his initial Kentucky Derby bet on Essential Quality from $500,000 to $2.4 by the time the colt entered the starting gate. 

He wouldn't get any of it back.

br_betting @br_betting

Mattress Mack watching the Kentucky Derby His $2.4M bet on Essential Quality did not cash https://t.co/Gi3HXs97Rz

The odds-on favorite who closed at 5-2, Essential Quality took fourth place in the 147th Run for the Roses, leaving McIngvale with another massive loss as famed trainer Bob Baffert picked up a record-breaking seventh Derby victory with Medina Spirit. 

Mattress Mack previously wagered $1 million on the Houston Cougars to win the NCAA tournament at 9-1 odds. His hometown university failed to defeat the eventual-champion Baylor Bears in the Final Four. 

McIngvale's last big win came during Super Bowl 55 when he turned a $3.46 million bet on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers into a $2.75 million profit. The mattress salesman typically turns his bets into store promotions, helping cover any losses.

Adam Levitan @adamlevitan

Mattress Mack a nosebleed stakes marketer. 1. Run promotion at his store. In this case, spend $3K+ & get your money back if Bucs win. 2. Make massive "bet" & make it VERY public, generating ton of free publicity for store. 3. In reality it's a mere hedge. 4. Print & repeat. https://t.co/iMKI314T2u

With the NBA and NHL postseasons about to begin, there's plenty of time for him to get back on track and cashing out major paydays once again. 


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