Gail Howard’s "Lottery Winning Strategies" Book Review

Gail Howard Lottery Wheeling Strategies BookOver the years, lotto enthusiasts have tried many strategies to win the lottery, from using manual spreadsheets to developing powerful mathematical algorithms. Former Wall Street trader Gail Howard began developing her own lotto-winning formulas in the 1980s. By the 1990s, she was a well-known lottery expert, and she soon developed a number picking system called Smart Luck. Her book, Lottery Winning Strategies and 70% Win Formula, summarizes many of her most lucrative strategies. Here, we review the book and Howard’s lotto-winning system.


Lottery Winning Strategies and 70% Win Formula is just 26 pages long. In this fairly short book, Gail Howard details nine tips for lotto number selection and five tips for which numbers to avoid and which groups of numbers are the best to play. She also introduces what she considers to be the most important rule of all: the 70% rule. This rule states that for each lottery, 70% of all winning combinations fall within a particular range of numbers. The information contained in this book is useful for pick-4, pick-5, pick-6, and pick-7 lotto games.

While the strategies laid out in Howard’s book (and Smart Luck software) can be very helpful for lottery players, some readers may find the writing and concepts to be very technical in nature. The system also takes a bit of practice to learn how to use it best. For these reasons, make sure to read an excerpt of the book before you buy it!

Lottery Expert Gail HowardGAIL HOWARD’S STRATEGIES

Reduce the Odds

There are long odds on winning most lotteries, so reducing the odds will give you a better chance at the jackpot. For example, New York Take 5 lottery requires players to choose five numbers from 1 through 39. The odds of winning the top prize of approximately $57,575.70 are one in 575,757. 

Meanwhile, Powerball lottery players must choose 5 numbers from a range of 69, plus a Powerball number from 1 to 26. The minimum jackpot is $40 million, but the odds of winning this jackpot are much lower at about one in 292,201,338. Although the prize is bigger, the odds of winning are much lower, so playing Take 5 would improve your odds from one in many millions to one in several thousand.

Have a Balanced Playing Card

Having a balanced card means choosing a wide range of numbers from low to high. Howard recommends avoiding choosing numbers that are close together, such as several numbers in the 30-range. She gives the same advice regarding even and odd numbers: make sure to pick a variety.

Avoid Anniversary Numbers

Many people pick special numbers, such as birthdays or anniversaries. While there are a few instances of this tactic working, it’s not the best plan. Anniversaries have a day of the month (one of maximum 31 numbers) and a month number (one of 12 numbers). Choosing one or more anniversary dates immediately lowers your range of choices to within 31—thus reducing the balanced range of your card.

Avoid Quick Picks

When the computer chooses your numbers, you have no guarantee of getting a balanced playing card. The computer may choose mostly high or mostly low numbers. This can lower your chances of winning right from the start.

Do the Math!

Here’s the most important part of Howard’s strategy: the 70% rule. In her lottery book, the lotto expert lays out how to determine the most successful range of winning numbers for your particular lottery. 

She explains how this works for the Take 5 lottery. If you add up the five numbers on each winning ticket in the lottery’s history, you’ll find that 70% of the time, the numbers on the winning card add up to between 75 and 125. This means that when you play Take 5, you should always make sure that your numbers add up within this range. 

In her book, Howard provides the winning 70% range for the 236 lottery games that are active globally as of October 2014. In other words, this book contains the key to applying the 70% strategy to literally any established lottery in the world. 


While some of the ideas in Gail Howard’s system are fairly simple, the math behind them is more complex. In her short book, Howard quickly dives into the calculations that will get you the best results. If you are mathematically inclined and are interested in understanding Howard’s strategy, this book may make it easier for you to choose your next winning card.

On the other hand, readers who would prefer a more in-depth and easier-to-grasp explanation of Gail Howard’s lotto winning system could benefit from reading her popular longer book, Lottery Master Guide.

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