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Rory McIIlroy’s Father Cashes in Big on Son’s Win at British Open

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By Vincent Paul Hidalgo | July 23, 2014 3:30 PM EST

Call it a bit of clairvoyance. Hell, call it luck, but it is all about a father's confidence in a son.

Gerry McIIlroy is one proud father and one richer man after his son, Rory, took home the British Open. The elderly McIIroy placed a bet on his son winning the Open in 2004 at 500-to-1 odds and cashed in big when that gamble became a reality last Sunday at Royal Liverpool per Atlanta Journal Constitution.

REUTERS
Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland kisses the Claret Jug after winning the British Open Championship at the Royal Liverpool Golf Club in Hoylake, northern England July 20, 2014.

The bet paid off a total of $171,000 with some of his pals also taking on the wagers in 2005 which if it takes the similar path will yield a $136,000 payout. The British Open winner and one of the youngest ever to win three majors in a ripe age of 25, Rory was a child prodigy when his father made the bet in 2004. He just captured the 2004 Junior Ryder Cup with the European Team and suffice it say that the bet his father made had some logic to it and not just pure luck.

In 2005, Rory also became the youngest victor of two celebrated amateur tournaments in Ireland which brought down the 500-to-1 odds in 2004 to just 250-to-1 odds the following year, the bet some of his father's friends banked in.

Given his rapid rise in the golfing world, it is still astonishing that the young prodigy has risen so fast during a ten year career. He was ranked top 50 in the world by 2008, won his first pro tournament in 2009 and won the 2011 U.S. Open. His achievements this early is drawing him rave comparison to Tiger Woods and Jack Niklaus, both masters who garnered lots of laurels at a tender age.

The winner of the prize money of $1.66 million last Sunday was also asked by reported of his father's bet stating that he had some knowledge of the wager made but was not sure of the exact payout it would yield.

"Honestly, that 50 grand [pounds] that he's going to win is way -- I mean, the other three friends that he did that with, they're going to be very happy," McIlroy said. "He's never reminded me. I knew that he'd done it. I'm not sure if it will pay out. If it does, it's a nice little bonus."

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(Photo: REUTERS / Toby Melville)
Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland kisses the Claret Jug after winning the British Open Championship at the Royal Liverpool Golf Club in Hoylake, northern England July 20, 2014.
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