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Awesome / Sale of the Century

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  • Any time the winning score is $100note  or more.
  • During the shopping era, any time a champion accumulates enough money so that they can skip the next prize that they were close to for the next higher prize.Example 
  • Any time a contestant wins the Lot, or whatever the top prize is, depending on the version.
  • Any time in the Winner's Board era that a champion picks the "WIN" card followed by the "CAR" (or the $10,000 in the US version). Just as awesome, if not more, was if the car (or the $10,000 in the US version) was the first prize cleared off the board.
  • Any time someone wins big from Instant Cash; the highest it ever got on the US version was $16,000.

    Jim Perry (1983-89) 
  • March 18, 1983: Mort Kamins wins the Lot, winning a total of $107,369.note  He went on to win the Tournament of Champions later that year, winning nearly $250,000note  throughout his tenure.
  • July 13, 1983: Richard Heft becomes the first winner of the cash jackpot, taking home $82,000.
  • August 9, 1983: Barbara Phillips becomes the only player to win the Lot during the Cash Jackpot era, winning a then-daytime recordnote  of $151,689 (including a $68,000 Jackpot).
    • What makes Barbara's victory even more incredible was she was initially going for just the Cash Jackpot, which she needed only twenty-six more dollars to win. However, if she accumulated $116 (which was more than what any other player had accumulated in a single game up to that point), she would win everything. Barbara ended up with $120, getting a crucial $15 Money Card in the final Fame Game, and sealing her victory by answering all of the "Final Three" questions correctly.
  • April 11, 1984: David Rogers chooses to leave the show with $109,000 (the highest Jackpot on the daytime version and the highest in the overall US run), thereby winning a total of $122,084.note 
  • February 6, 1985 (nighttime): John Gose, who won big on Now You See It and The New $25,000 Pyramid, becomes the first Lot winner of the syndicated version, needing at least $95 in his final game to win everything ($156,339; including a $72,000 Jackpot), and winning with exactly $95. Gose would later go on to appear in the Australian/American Challenge as well as at least two World Championship tournaments.
  • February 27, 1985 (nighttime): Helaine Lowery wins the Lot ($142,974; including a $64,000 Jackpot), earning her victory in dramatic fashion after going into the Speed Round trailing by $5.
  • April 1-8, 1985 (syndicated): Alice Conkwright, who completely decimated her opponents (reaching the Century mark on each of her six shows, including, on her first day, taking down champion Michael Friedman, who was going for the Lot) and refused every Instant Bargain offered to her, including a total of $11,000. This steadfast refusal led to several Funny Moments, discussed on that tab.note 
    • And speaking of Alice, in the episode after her Lot-clinching win, Jim mentioned during his opening spiel that he had asked her why she didn't buy any Instant Bargains, and she said that she didn't feel she was smart enough, and that if she bought one, she wouldn't win. You heard that right—the lady who averaged nearly $130 per show didn't think she was smart enough.
    • This wasn't the last we'd heard from Alice. Later than same year, she and Frances Wolf traveled to Australia to compete against Virginia Noel and Fran Powell, as part of their versions' Australian/American Challenge. Unfortunately, the Aussie champs proved too much for the Americans, due to their quick reflexes on the buzzers. Her last appearances came two years later, on the American version's International Invitational Tournament and the Australian version's World Championship in 1987.
  • April 8, 1985 (daytime): Mark DeCarlo (Yes, THAT one) becomes the first player to win the Lot in the Winners' Board era, winning $115,257, despite trailing throughout most of the show and winning only after his opponent missed a tie-breaker question.
  • April 26, 1985 (daytime): Jeff Colburn clinches the Lot, winning $123,753. In the previous episode, he cleared the board and won an Oldsmobile Toronado with a score of $121.
  • September 24, 1985 (syndicated): Tim Holleran, whose original 8-day run began on the May 24, 1985 season 1 finale of the Syndicated series, wins the Lot, becoming the all-time American winnernote  with $166,875 (including a $90,000 Jackpot, the highest amount achieved on the syndicated version and second highest overall). He made one more appearance during the 1987 International Tournament. Though he didn't win (Cary Young of Australia did), Tim pocketed an additional $16,502, bringing his final total to $183,377.
  • January 21, 1986 (syndicated): Curtis Warren, many years before winning over $1,000,000 on Greed (and the hair), becomes the first player on the syndicated run to win the lot during its "Winner's Board" era. His grand total was $136,288.note 
  • January 30 & 31, 1986 (syndicated): Back-to-back first-day big wins from the Winner's Board. First, new champion Jerry Weisberger won $10,000, and then on the next day, James Reynolds (who came back after an error that occurred when he first appeared on the show) won a Volvo 740.
  • March 10, 1986 (syndicated): Lisa Munoz won her Lot-clinching game with a score of $140, leaving with $122,551.note 
  • August 8, 1986: Jody Spreckles wins the Lot, leaving with a total of $107,462. She was brought back due to an error that occurred during her original tenth game and cleared the board by defeating a six-time champion.
  • June 9, 1987: Linda Credit wins $140,457, including $14,000 in the Instant Cash.
  • October 1987: Tom O'Brien becomes the all-time daytime winner (and third highest in overall Sale history), winning $152,847. His record for the biggest winner in daytime television history stood until the December 30, 2013 episode of The Price is Right.
  • Any time during the Winner's Big Money Game era where the champion falls behind in the bonus game (either by passing or getting a puzzle wrong) only to make a major comeback and win.
  • February 1988: Diane Cross wins the final Tournament of Champions in a major upset, winning a guaranteed $10,000 for winning the finals plus a Mercedes-Benz 190 by winning the final Winner's Big Money Game. Why is it a major upset? She beat Linda Credit and Tom O'Brien in the finals, both of whom won the $50,000 during their aforementioned runs.note 
  • April 1988: Rani White, becoming the only player in the Winner's Big Money Game era to win the $50,000, winning a grand total of $140,011.note 
    • In May 1986, her husband, Richard White, won about $120,000 on "Sale" and later competed as one of the six American representatives in the 1987 World Championship in Australia. Unfortunately, while Rani herself was invited to compete in the 1989 World Championship, she was unable to compete due to pregnancy.
  • March 23, 1989: In the show's penultimate episode, Gina Enzer won a trip to Santa Barbara, an $8,600 Garage Sale (a collection of prizes which had been unsold in previous Instant Bargains, including a rather ugly-looking fish), AND the $16,000 Instant Cash among other things...and she lost the match. Her final total was $27,642.

    Tony Barber (Australia, 1980-91) 
  • 4 September 1980: Vincent Smith becoming the first Lot winner, winning $73,099 after claiming the $25 in the final Fame Game. He had such a huge lead over his opponents that they didn't even bother playing the final three questions. Vince would go on to author The Great Australian Trivia Quiz Book, as well as compete in numerous "Sale" tournaments, including the 21st Anniversary Challenge (where he advanced to the finals, showing that he still had it even 20 years later).
  • 29 April 1981: Reverend Geoff Clarke wins the Lot, totaling $73,347. His victory on Sale gave the series' its highest ratings ever.
  • 30 June 1981: Fran Powell wins the Lot, totaling $70,813. She had previously appeared on "The Great Temptation" in 1973, winning $25,000, and later won the Australian/American Challenge alongside Virginia Noel. Fran would go on to work for "Sale" as the question writer/adjudicator from 1986 to 1991 (she would be replaced by David Poltorak).
  • 16 March 1982: Future "Sale" super-champion Cary Young wins the Lot, leaving with $78,606.
  • 15 April 1982: Andrew Lockett wins the Lot, despite stumbling midway through his final game, winning a then-record $85,000. Over 20 years later, Andrew would win $500,000 on Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?.
  • 11 October 1982: Ian Tweedie becomes the first champion to claim the Cash Jackpot, worth $130,000. Obviously, his win at the time was a "Sale" record.
  • 26 October 1982: Lee Tanabe becomes the second Cash Jackpot Lot winner, winning over $162,000 (including a $70,000 Jackpot, total Lot value of $149,091), completely dominating her opponents in her Lot-clinching game and being out of reach by the final Fame Game. Also, Lee's victory came on Delvene Delaney's second night as hostess.
  • 12 October 1983: Hayward Mayberley won $343,536 (including a $206,000 Jackpot), which was a record at the time.
  • June 1984: Virginia Noel; at the beginning of this Speedround (called "Fast Money" at that point), the scores were $15-$15-$85. With questions worth $5 each, she buzzed-in first on all 14 questions to win with $155. She later went on to win the Lot, which included a $120,000 Jackpot.
  • July 1984: Barry Jones (not the politician from Victoria, this particular Barry Jones is from Western Australia) wins $213,712 (including a $90,000 Jackpot).
  • 21 August 1984: Future super champion David Bock wins $245,129 (including a $106,000 Jackpot).
  • 1985: Ian Stevens performed a similar feat in the Fast Money — the scores were $15-$25-$170. This promo refers to it as being the highest one-day score. He went on to win the Lot, not buying a single item in the Gift Shop along the way.
  • 25 October 1985: Brett Ednie wins a total of $338,878, including a $204,000 Jackpot (being only the second person in Australian Sale history to win more than $200,000 in cash)
  • 14 March 1986: Geoff Saunders wins the Lot, totaling $307,608.
  • 12 November 1986: In his final game, future Aussie Sale question-setter David Poltorak answered 35 of the 55 questions posed on that show (16 of which being the Fast Money), winning with a staggering $200, and winning a then-record total of $376,104.27 (including a $244,000 Jackpot).
  • 21 May 1987: Marilyn Benthien wins the Lot, accumulating $248,515 (including a $106,000 Jackpot) during her seven-night run, and hitting the Century mark on five of her shows. She later competed in the following year's World Championship, but was defeated by eventual champion David Bock. Here's her complete run, including her World Championship match.
  • 11 August 1988: Andrew Werbik becomes the youngest contestant to win the Lot. At 16 years of age, he wins $315,702.
  • October 1988: Mike McCarthy wins the Lot, accumulating $262,444 (including a $126,000 Jackpot) during his eight-night run.
  • 1990: Cary Young wins the first Masters tournament
  • 15 October 1990: Kate Buckingham wins a then-record total of $471,640, including a $318,000 Jackpot. Ironically, on her first show, she defeated a man called John Sargent, who was playing for the record Lot himself.
  • More of a Moment of Awesome for the Commonwealth of Australia, as the Aussies came out the victorious in most of the international tournaments, including...
    • June-July 1985: Team Australia (consisting of future Sale judge Fran Powell and the aforementioned Virginia Noel) sweeps Team USA (consisting of Frances Wolff and the infamous Alice Conkwright) in three straight games in the Australian/American Challenge.
    • April 1986: Like the Australian/American challenge from eight months earlier, Australia wins the Ashes by sweeping the United Kingdom (represented by Susan Kaye and legendary British quiz show contestant Daphne Fowler) in three straight games.
    • October 1986: Cary Young (part of the Australian team that won the Ashes six months earlier) wins the Commonwealth Games against players from Canada and New Zealand.
    • March-April 1987: Cary Young continues his dominance, winning the first World Championship against players from the United States, United Kingdom, and New Zealand, in addition to his own country. Hell, his winning to become the Australian representative in the Finals is a Moment of Awesome in itself, as he beat his Ashes teammate, David Bock, by a fiver at the very last second.
      • Earlier in the year, Cary competed on the American Sale in the International Invitational Tournament, winning a Corvette and US$42,733 all told. One of his opponents was Tim Holleran, who also competed in the Australian World Championship.
    • 1988: David Bock wins the second World Championship.
    • 1989: New Zealand's Brian MacDonnell wins the third (and final) World Championship, keeping the title in Australasia.

    Glenn Ridge (Australia, 1991-2001) 
  • 1 June 1992: Robert Kusmierski becomes the biggest winner in Australian Sale history with $676,790, which includes a record Jackpot of $508,000.
  • 1994: Tony Pestill wins with a grand total of $344,183. He is also the first Australian contestant to have finished all his games with a score of at least $100.
  • 1996: On the 40 Years of Television special, Pete Smith won his heat and advanced to the finals, all while doing the announcing as well. In the finals, he left the announcing duties to Gary Coleman (who was one of his initial heat opponents).
  • 1997: Another Masters tournament airs; Cary Young wins the final against recent champion Len Keating (who won the lot in 1995)
  • 8 July 1997: John Patterson wins the Lot with a score of $100, leaving with $282,647 (including a Jackpot of $126,000).
  • 23 March 1999: 21-year-old Ben Wong, who often won his games with over $100, wins $340,249 (including a Jackpot of $178,000) despite trailing throughout most of the show. Wong was the last Lot winner before the premiere of Who Wants To Be a Millionaire.
  • 8 July 1999: Andrew Yeend wins the Lot on a tie-breaker, with a total of $357,889 (including a $184,000 Jackpot), making him the series' tenth largest winner during the show's run, and the last before the "New Century" format.
  • 31 May 2000: Tom Beck becomes first Lot winner of the "New Century" era, winning a grand total of $420,573 (including a Jackpot of $250,000). Beck would go on to win two "Super Sale" contests in February and September 2001note , adding nearly a half million more in winnings.
  • 21 February 2001: Simon Fallon, whose run comprised of the first eight regular episodes of the final season, wins $434,065 (including a Jackpot of $292,000), making him the third highest winner during the show's run.
  • September 2001: Louise Williams becomes the last Lot winner of "Classic" Sale, winning $354,117 (including a Jackpot of $182,000), her victory coming two months prior to the end of the series.

    Temptation (Australia, 2005-09) 
  • 22 June 2005: Less than a month into the new program, Brigid O'Connor becomes the first Lot winner on Temptation, winning $663,738 (including a half million in gold note ). Brigid had also been on the original $ale years earlier, where she wasn't as successful.
  • 29 August 2005: Stephen Hall becomes Temptation Lot Winner #2, winning $672,357.
  • 9 September 2005: Rob O'Neill becomes Temptation Lot Winner #3, winning $701,241, and making him the all-time Australian game show champion... that is until Rob "Coach" Fulton became Australia's first Millionaire one month later.
  • 3 October 2005: Two contestants score over $100 in the front game. No, that's not a typo. Too bad one of them had to lose.
  • March 2006: Yolanda Stopar, who not only won eight games to retire undefeated on March 8 as a Grand Champion and take away the Lot (grand total—$932,577), but did so with a perfect record in the Bonus Round (ten questions in a minute to add $50,000 to a pot starting at $50,000, which could only be taken if a player wins the Lot) across all seven attempts to max out her jackpot at $800,000 (8 shows at $50K a show, doubled if won; she was the only contestant to ever win said maximum), thus becoming the biggest winner in the entire franchise.
  • 27 March-3 April 2006: The Temptation Quizmasters series, which featured nine champions from Temptation (the four Lot winners at the time), the original $ale (Tom Beck), and Who Wants To Be a Millionaire (including Australia's first Millionaire). It came down to Rob O'Neill (who was briefly the biggest winner in Australian television) and the aforementioned Yolanda Stopar, with O'Neill coming out as the victor.
  • 2 November 2006: Tracey Korsten wins the Lot, leaving with $857,655 (including a $700,000 Jackpot).
  • 14 March 2007: Tony Barber and Alyce Platt (the most memorable partnership in "Sale" history) filling in for Ed Phillips and Livinia Nixon (who were playing against Dr. Andrew Rochford and Giaan Rooney of "What's Good For You" in a special "Battle of the Network Shows"), and showing that they still had it, even after a sixteen-year absence. A bit of a Downer Ending for Ed and Livinia, though, as they lost the game at the last second.
  • 11 June 2007: Blair Martin wins the Lot, leaving with $603,002 (including a $400,000 Jackpot).
  • 22 August 2007: Sunil Badami wins the Lot, leaving with $638,068 (including a $400,000 Jackpot).

     Steve Parr (New Zealand, 1989-1993; 1994) 
  • 1989 (date to be checked): Hamish McDouall wins the lot on his final night with a grand total of $96,513. note 
  • 1992 (date to be checked): Jeff Safey wins a car on his final night, giving him a total of $40,209. On his last night, he initially finished $11 short of winning the lot; after the consolation prize announcement, an incorrect judging on a question was reversed, meaning he was just $1 short of winning all prizes; essentially, all he had to do was win the next game to win the lot. A "shattered" Jeff decided to take the car.
    • Jeff later appeared on a Trans-Tasman tournament episode (incidentally, the unannounced last episode of the New Zealand version of Sale), beating his opponent by $1.
    • He also appeared on the Australian Temptation revival, winning over $350,000.
  • 11-17 November 1994: Champion Dean Sole wins the lot in only five shows, posting scores of $164, a franchise record $201, $110, $150, and $165, giving him a total of $85,313. note