Archibald Prize 2014 plunge pulled off by punters

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Art punters have chalked up a big victory over online bookie after pulling off a successful plunge on the winner of the 2014 Archibald Prize.

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Punters backed Fiona Lowry’s portrait of Penelope Seidler from the succulent outside odds of $18 into a clear-cut $4.50 favourite, forcing the bookie to suspend betting days before the official announcement was made on Friday.

Installed an eighth favourite behind ‘Torah Bright’ by Sportingbet after the finalists were announced, punters quickly loaded up Lowry’s portrait.

“By the time we shut betting, nearly 90% of the money we were holding in this market was for the winning portrait,” Sportingbet’s Andrew Brown said.

“It’s fair to say we were taken to the cleaners.”

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