Update: Father's old bet on McIlroy pays off

Rory McIlroy's father, Gerry, bet big on him years ago to win the British Open before age 26, which could pay off in 2014 at Royal Liverpool.
Rory McIlroy's father, Gerry, bet big on him years ago to win the British Open before age 26, which could pay off in 2014 at Royal Liverpool. ( Getty Images )

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Isn't there a point when most every dad has the utmost confidence in their kid's talent?

There might not be a better example than Rory McIlroy's father – and it's going to be rewarded, a UK retail bookmaker said Sunday via its Twitter account.

You see, when McIlroy was a teen prodigy, his dad, Gerry, and some friends decided to pool some money together – and got 500-1 odds that McIlroy could win the British Open before age 26.

That paid off big.

Said the bookmaker via its Twitter account, @Ladbrokes: "CONGRATULATIONS RORY: We're paying out 180k to Rory's Dad and pals. There'll be some party at the McIlroy's tonight!" Ladbrokes attached a photo of McIlroy holding the Claret Jug.

Sure, the money pales in comparison to McIlroy's would-be first-place check of about $1.67 million, but the bragging rights seem nearly as steeped.

The amount of the bet cited by Ladbrokes was a little more than half of the original reports. Saturday, Andrew Cotter of BBC had been one of the media members to catch up on the news. He posted via his Twitter account, @MrAndrewCotter: "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."

Brian Keogh of Irish Golf Desk had some info on the matter as well, posting via his Twitter account, @IrishGolfDesk: "@MrAndrewCotter I remember it was his dad and three pals, £400 (£100 x 4) at 500/1 with the local bookie in Holywood"

But Saturday, a Ladbrokes spokesperson told ESPN that McIlroy's father was part of a 200-pound bet in 2004 at those 500-1 odds; at $341 in U.S. dollars at the time, that's going to pay $171,000; another 400 pounds in bets placed in 2004 by friends of Gerry McIlroy will pay $136,700.

It just added a little more drama to Sunday's finish – which could use every bit of suspense available, given McIlroy's six-shot lead over Rickie Fowler.

[Updated at 6:52 p.m. EDT on Sunday, July 20]