Gerry McIlroy bet BIG (literally) on his son, and it looks like it's going to pay off

July 19, 2014

Three years ago, Rory McIlroy won his first major championship on Father's Day at the 2011 U.S. Open. Now, a third major title would involve a different kind of gift to his dad.

McIlroy began the week as a British Open betting favorite at around 12-to-1 odds, but his father Gerry, apparently has a 500-to-1 ticket for his son winning. How do you get one of the game's best players and a two-time major champion as such a long shot?

By betting on him early. Really early.


According to Andrew Cotter, a reporter who mainly covers golf for the BBC, Gerry McIlroy convinced a gambling house to give him those long odds on Rory, then 15, winning an Open Championship before turning 26. Gerry and his friends pooled together 400 pounds meaning the group stands to win 200,000 pounds (nearly $350,000) should Rory, 25, hang on at Hoylake.

So just to confirm - 10 yrs ago Gerry McIlroy & three friends put £400 at 500-1 on 15 year-old Rory to win The Open before he turned 26.

— Andrew Cotter (@MrAndrewCotter) July 19, 2014

You've got to like their odds -- especially with Rory holding a six-shot lead through 54 holes.

UPDATE: Rory McIlroy won, meaning Gerry McIlroy won his prescient wager. Rory confirmed that much in his post-round press conference, but indicated the bet would probably mean a little more to the others involved. "The other 3 men that he did that with, they're going to be very happy." Yep.