Down under in Melbourne, Australia, one casino punter was feeling extremely lucky, pouncing on an opportunity to steal (not win) a Ferrari F430, when a casino valet handed him the keys. Media Man and Gambling911 follow the story in high speed pursuit...
Melbourne Police have now arrested the formally lucky punter after a Crown Casino valet mistakenly handed over the keys to a Ferrari F430 Spider and he took off for a joyride lasting half a day to Coolaroo of all places.
The 32-year cheeky fella was reportedly wearing a tracksuit when a casino valet gave him the keys to the bright red, V8 supercar about 12.30am today.
Police advise the punter drove north up the Tullamarine Freeway but was pinched by police about 6.30am as he fuelled up at a servo in Coolaroo, on Melbourne's outer northern region.
"He is currently assisting police with their inquiries," she said.
Forensic police will today examine the car, which has been towed to a holding yard in Campbellfield.
The attendant at the servo advised the man filled the beast up with petrol before police nabbed the bandit.
"He just filled up with petrol, came in here, paid for it and the cops were outside and just got him," he said.
"The cops I think were already after him."
The happening starting to generate a serious of state, national and international news stories, with Melbourne 3AW radio enjoying banter with a witness "Mark".
"Someone walked out of the casino past me and the security guard, got in and drove off,". The security guard said to me - because he only had an old tracksuit on - and he said 'you can't pick 'em can you'."
Crown Casino spokesman, top brass, Gary O’Neill said the incident was a first for the casino. He explained customers using valet parking were provided with a ticket to be returned to the casino parking attendant when time to collect your car.
"It has happened in the past from time to time that people lose their tickets, and in these circumstances we ask for proof of identification and a valid driver’s licence. Those procedures were followed on this occasion," he said.
"The procedures that we have followed in the past have not resulted in this particular incident, but that’s not to say our system is perfect," he said.
"We’re cooperating fully with the police investigation."
Mr O’Neill said the incident had been caught on film by their CCTV cameras and the footage would be handed over to police. Crown Casino is known for its world class security, as is it's Sydney competitor Star City. The Australian land casino industry was forced to upgrade security in recent years following a succession of undesirable incidents. Industry insiders sometimes joke about the plastic handcuffs initiative and footy and cricket stars getting pissed at casino events but this matter was very serious in nature. The casino wants its VIPs, high-rollers, whales and the like to know that their transport is in safe hands at Crown Casino.
Melbourne's Police 'Highway Patrol' is known to be world class and its understood that at least 99% of police corruption as featured on Network Nine 'Underbelly' has been cleaned up.
Crown tag lines include 'World Of Entertainment' and 'Wear The Crown'.
Mr James Packer, Australian and Asia Pacific casino and gaming king, remains the owner of Crown Limited. He also owns Burswood Casino aka Burswood Entertainment Complex in Western Australia, and has a number of interests in Macau and Britain, as well as new media - internet entities. Packer remains passionate for sport, meeting Virgin king Richard Branson last year at the Melbourne F1 Grand Prix and enjoys polo, as did his late father Kerry Packer.
Ok you want more on the sports car...we hear you...
The F430 went on sale in 2005 with the Spider convertible going for a cool $444,000 AUD, plus options and on-road costs.
F430 production was ceased earlier this year and will be replaced by the flashy458 Italia, which we understand has a two-year waiting list.
Casinos have long been associated with fast cars (and fast, sexy women). In recent years the online casino and online poker sector has plugged into the demo, with PartyGaming and PKR offering sports car as high level prizes.
A few months ago PartyGaming and PKR Poker had a Porsche up for grabs, but no one qualified to win. Not to be disheartened, Party's casino and poker brands are once again offering dream machine grand prizes...
Last week Richard Branson's Virgin Racing came to sponsorship terms with online poker powerhouse Full Tilt Poker. The massive exposure of Virgin's F1 involvement on a international scale was a key reason the deal went ahead.
A number of weeks before the public Virgin - Full Tilt Poker deal, PartyGaming's PartyPoker signed up F1 superstars Jaime Alguersuari and Giancarlo Fisichella as brand ambassadors. Poker legend and World Poker Tour mainstay Mike Sexton remains the global PartyPoker ambassador. Last month following the sporting theme, PartyPoker also signed up Italian football legend Francesco Totti. The financial terms of the poker sponsorship deals are not currently known, as all parties appear to want to keep the details under wraps. Speaking of big names, rumours are circulating that PartyGaming may be in the midst of doing another deal and announcement with movie legend of Rambo and Rocky fame, Sylvester Stallone. Sly is featured in the Rambo online slot game, exclusive to PartyGaming.
PartyCasino - Grand Win Auto - Win A Maserati GranTurismo
PartyPoker - Drive The Dream - Win a Aston Martin DB9 Coupe
Crown Casino Share Price - CWN: 8.290
*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911
*Media Man http://www.mediamanint.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. Gaming is just one of a dozen sectors covered
*The writer owns shares in Crown Limited
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