The cava has been flowing in a small town near Madrid where 130 people are celebrating winning Spain’s famous lottery El Gordo. Many of those who grouped together and picked “the Fat One”, worth a total of four million euros, are workers at the same factory in Alcalá de Henares. The annual draw is billed as the world’s richest lottery. One of the winners struggled to take the news in: “200 000 euros: a tenth!,” he said. “We did not know we won until this morning. I don’t know what to say.” The shopkeeper who sold the winning ticket – but did not buy a share himself – says he is happy for his friends anyway. “My wife told me I did not get it. Next time. The fact that people I know won, for me, it is already a triumph,” he said. The Spanish lottery is celebrating its 200th anniversary and is as popular as ever, despite – or perhaps because of – the economic gloom. One in nine Spaniards is estimated to have bought a ticket. The only guaranteed winner is the cash-strapped government, which is pocketing a billion euros from ticket sales. From next year winners will pay 20 per cent in tax.