With the Kentucky Derby running this weekend, everybody's rolling out the feature stories in advance. It will be seriously hard to top this one in the New York Times: It's the story of Conor Murphy, 29, who was shoveling manure last year as a stablehand in England until he placed a $75 "accumulator" bet on five horses he liked. All five won—defying odds of more than 160,000/1—and the bet paid off at $1.5 million for Murphy.
The native of Ireland immediately moved to Kentucky (he had previously worked there) and bought a stable of his own. Now one of the horses he is training, named Lines of Battle, will run in the derby on Saturday. If you're looking to cash in on Murphy's luck, be warned that Lines of Battle is a long shot at 33/1, and long shots never pay off, right? (Read more Kentucky Derby stories.)