Starter for Brookes


Oxford Brookes continued its winning streak on the current season of University Challenge, scooping a quarter-final victory of 185-160 over Christ’s College Cambridge.

Having already topped Cardiff University and the University of Arts, Brookes are now among the final eight left in the competition. Their success bodes well for the next match, which will be aired on Monday 7th February, 8pm on BBC2.

At just 19 years old, the university can be particularly proud of its achievement against the older Cambridge.

Members of the Brookes team hail from all disciplines: captain and history student Tony McLarin, from Exeter, was joined by Richard Williams (Architecture), Sarah Johnson (Mathematical Sciences) and Austin Sherlaw-Johnson, studying for a PhD in Music.
Questions tackled included pinpointing the location of the hottest place on Earth and establishing the identity of a sensory organ that has parts named after terms for a maze, an entrance hall and a percussion instrument.

The quartet were questioned and quizzed in training by their coach Dr Ian Bayley, Senior Lecturer in Computing.
Dr Bayley has previously proven his own general knowledge genius from securing the title ‘Brain of Britain’ on the BBC Radio 4 quiz last year, where he scored more points than all the other contestants put together.

As an alumnus of Balliol, he represented Oxford University in the Intercollegiate Championship Tournament run by NAQT (National Academic Quiz Tournaments).

The teams themselves are not permitted to discuss the programme, but Dr Bayley expressed his pleasure at beating such a prestigious institution: “this is a great result against one of the country’s top universities,” he said. “It shows how incredibly talented our students can be.”
Christ’s College Cambridge accepted their defeat admirably: “We’re very proud of them,” emphasised a spokesperson. “They’ve done really well so far, and we wish them luck next time.”