Wales Back In The Medals At Season-Ending Grand Prix

The final event in the 2018-19 BQA Quest Grand Prix Series provided a fitting climax to the season and more medal success for Welsh quizzers.

Having opened the season by regaining the title of British champion, Pat Gibson rounded it off by securing the season-long Order of Merit title in the best possible style, winnng the final event with 121.5 points and a massive 7.9 point margin over his Eggheads team-mate Kevin Ashman.

Mark Grant led the way for the Welsh contingent with a season’s best 5th place finish and a silver medal in Entertainment, and there was further medal success for Jeff Evans who shared the silver medal in Civilisation in a three-way tie.

Full Welsh results are shown below and you can find all the scores and the current UK rankings positions on the QUEST website.

Mark Grant – 111.6 (5th)
Ian Orriss – 101.3 (16th)
Brian Chesney – 94.4 (35th)
Jeff Evans – 94.3 (36th)
Andrew Teale – 91.6 (43rd)
Gareth Aubrey – 91.4 (45th)
Gareth Kingston – 91.3 (46th)
David Cowan – 90.4 (50th)
Lawrence Cook – 85.2 (67th)
Anthony Fish – 83.1 (75th)
Ian Welham – 78.2 (96th)
Phill Price – 60.0 (150th)

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Another Near Miss For Wales In Brain Of Britain Final

Wales was denied quiz glory on the BBC for a second time in as many months in the 2019 Brain of Britain final.

It was the turn of the Welsh vice-captain, Gareth Aubrey, to take on some of the UK’s finest quizzers in the deciding encounter of the 66th edition of the long-running Radio 4 competition.

The competitors preparing before the 2019 Brain of Britain final at the BBC Radio Theatre (Photo © Katie Bramall-Stainer)

The final vindicated the form book, however, as David Stainer led from the off to add the Brain of Britain title to a bulging trophy cabinet that already included numerous domestic and international medals and an Only Connect series title.

The result also showed once again the strength of both the UK quizzing circuit and particularly the Quiz League of London, with both David and runner-up Frankie Fanko regularly taking part in both competitions. We’d recommend that anyone looking to have a go at Brain of Britain try out some of these sorts of Events to help their preparation.

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Welsh Trio Narrowly Miss Mastermind Glory

There was agony, but great pride for three of Wales’ best quizzers in the 2019 Mastermind final.

It was particularly bittersweet for us at the Quiz Organisation Of Wales, as all three are Welsh internationals who were part of the Wales A squad at this year’s Celtic Nations Quizzing Championships.

Dave Cowan opened proceedings with a tricky specialist subject round on the movie career of the Marx Brothers, scoring 10 on those and 13 on general knowledge. Mark Grant then took 12 points on the theatre architect, Frank Matcham, and followed that up with 14 in his general knowledge round. Ian Orriss led the way for Wales, scoring 14 points on Owain Glyndŵr and adding 13 on general knowledge. It was not to be for Ian, however, as Judith Lewis overhauled him on the last general knowledge question of the contest.

Our congratulations to Judith, a worthy winner of a tense final. The performances of our Welsh trio are testament to the value of competitive quizzing experience in Mastermind, with seven of the last ten winners regularly competing on the UK and international circuits. If you’re looking to have a go at Mastermind, we’d be happy to help you prepare at our regular Events.

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World Championship Quizzing Returns To Cardiff

Cardiff saw the very highest level of quizzing competition for the second straight year, as the Quiz Organisation of Wales again hosted one of the many venues for the World Quizzing Championships.

Twenty-eight quizzers from six countries took part in the Welsh capital, among them six-time world champion and Egghead Kevin Ashman and The Chase favourite, Mark Labbett. The title of World Champion stayed with its holder, as reigning champion Olav Bjortomt of England again proved his class ahead of the USA’s Steve Perry and Finland’s Tero Kalliolevo. Cardiff did provide two of the world’s top 10 (with Ashman 4th and Didier Bruyere of France 7th) and there was also success in the room for University of Bristol quizzer Daniel Hawkins who was the champion in the under-20s category.

Cardiff’s quizzers take on the best in the world in the 2019 World Quizzing Championships at Cardiff University Students Union

Welsh team captain Mark Grant secured 13th place overall and there were fifteen Welsh quizzers in the global field of 2,653 competitors, including Alun Powell making his debut in IQA/BQA competition. Full Welsh results are shown below and you can find all the scores and the current world rankings positions on the QUEST website.

Mark Grant – 155 (13th)
Ian Orriss – 119 (129th)
Gareth Aubrey – 118 (132nd)
Mark Labbett – 116 (152nd)
Gareth Kingston – 113 (182nd)
Jeff Evans – 106 (285th)
David Cowan – 104 (318th)
Anthony Fish – 103 (336th)
Phil Bennion – 102 (352nd)
Ian Welham – 94 (486th)
Rhys Winwood – 70 (1111th)
Alun Powell – 64 (1282nd)
Phill Price- 62 (1345th)
Nicki Cockburn – 61 (1370th)
Bob Timothy – 52 (1621st)

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Welsh Quizzers Straight Back In Action In Latest Grand Prix

It was a swift return to action for Wales’ quizzers, with May’s BQA Grand Prix coming just days after the Celtic Nations Quizzing Championships concluded.

Overall victory went to an important contributor to events in Edinburgh, with Didier Bruyere racking up 132.2 points having set the questions for the individual competition the previous weekend. It was a quiet day for the Welsh contingent in the overall standings but there was genre medal success for Julia Hobbs, securing a silver in Lifestyle having captained Wales D on the Scottish trip. We were also delighted to welcome Ed Mason to his first Grand Prix, hopefully the first of many.

Full Welsh results are shown below and you can find all the scores and the current UK rankings positions on the QUEST website.

Gareth Aubrey – 99.6 (31st)
Alan Morgan – 96.1 (42nd)
Jeff Evans – 94.6 (49th)
Ian Orriss – 93.0 (59th)
David Edwards – 90.6 (72nd)
Ian Welham – 90.2 (77th)
Iwan Thomas – 87.1 (90th)
Andrew Teale – 85.9 (98th)
Rhys Winwood – 61.1 (164th)
Lauren Hamer – 60.1 (165th)
Phill Price – 56.2 (169th)
Ed Mason – 49.1 (176th)

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Highs And Lows For Wales At 2019 Celtic Nations Quizzing Championships

Wales’ quizzers achieved a number of notable highlights, but also suffered some major disappointments at the Celtic Nations Quizzing Championships in Edinburgh.

The Individual event saw the Welsh team captain, Mark Grant, score 81.7 points to regain the Celtic Nations title from his long-standing rival, Mark Henry of Ireland on 79.4. Scotland’s now-legendary strength in depth was however in evidence once again further down the standings, meaning that they took the highest score from the event in the Overall competition, tallying 1120 points to Ireland’s 778 and Wales’s 460.

In the Pairs event it was Ireland’s Mark who came out on top, teaming up with Dave McBryan to score 76 points and retain that title in some style. Their compatriots Lorcan Duff and David Lea finished 2nd on 69 points, just ahead of Mark Grant and Gareth Kingston of Wales on 68. However once again it was Scotland who claimed the advantage in the overall standings, taking 726 points to Ireland’s 584 and Wales’s 379.

The Team matches saw each nation’s A, B, C and D squads facing off against each other twice, once on each day of the event. On day one, Ireland kicked things off by taking three out of four matches against Wales, with only a draw in the C match preventing the whitewash. Ireland followed that by winning their A and D team matches against Scotland, before Wales stunned the hosts by winning all four matches.

When Ireland took three out of four matches against Wales in the reverse fixture on day two, there was a chance for the Quizzers In Green to overhaul Scotland in the overall standings. The Blue Wall responded superbly, taking three out of four matches against both Ireland and Wales, although the one Welsh victory came in the A match and was secured despite the enforced absence of team captain and Individual champion Mark Grant. Those results translated into 1006 points for Ireland in the overall standings, with Scotland scoring 817 and Wales 744.

Many congratulations are of course due to our friends at the Association of Scottish Quizzers, who retained the Overall title with 2663 to 2368 for Ireland and 1583 for Wales. Our thanks must also go to our host venue at The Voodoo Rooms, together with everyone who had a hand in organising what was yet again the biggest renewal of these championships.

But our greatest and final thanks must go to the record travelling squad of 17 quizzers who represented Wales over the weekend (especially as for the first time in recorded history, we managed to get them all in one place for the squad photo!) It really is the case that these tournaments are all about the people who attend and the friendship and camaraderie that results so it really would be impossible without them.

The Wales squad at the 2019 Celtic Nations Quizzing Championships in Edinburgh

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Wales Squad Complete Edinburgh Prep On Historic Day Of Quizzing

Wales’ top quizzers will take plenty of positives to the Celtic Nations Quizzing Championships in Edinburgh after the latest BQA Grand Prix quiz.

The event saw one of the largest ever fields for an individual quiz in the UK with 190 quizzers taking part at venues up and down the country, but it was former Oxford University quizzing star Daoud Jackson who took a debut Grand Prix victory with 142.1 points, pipping Egghead Pat Gibson and Chaser Paul Sinha to the post on Grand National day. The university Quizbowl scene has produced a number of very talented quizzers in recent years and we are sure that this will be the first of many victories for Daoud and his colleagues in the years to come.

With scores high across the board, Welsh captain Mark Grant took an impressive 7th-place overall and there were genre medal successes for Gareth Aubrey (Gold in Sport & Games), Andrew Teale (Bronze in Civilisation) and Mark Grant (Bronze in Art, Culture & History) as well as three very welcome debuts by Stu Hern, Margaret Gabica and Bob Timothy. Full Welsh results are shown below and you can find all the scores and the current UK rankings positions on the QUEST website.

Quizzers hard at work during the April 2019 BQA Grand Prix quiz at Cardiff University Students Union

Mark Grant – 137.6 (7th)
Ian Orriss – 129.0 (24th)
Gareth Kingston – 125.5 (34th)
Gareth Aubrey – 124.3 (42nd)
David Cowan – 123.9 (46th)
Andrew Teale – 122.9 (50th)
Anthony Fish – 115.8 (75th)
Jeff Evans – 114.9 (84th)
Stu Hern – 111.6 (96th)
Ian Welham – 106.6 (109th)
Margaret Gabica – 105.9 (113th)
Lauren Hamer – 102.5 (123rd)
Rhys Winwood – 82.5 (171st)
Phill Price – 82.2 (172nd)
Bob Timothy – 76.5 (178th)

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Frustration For Welsh Quizzers In Latest Grand Prix

Wales’ most civilised quizzers were left frustrated by one of several close finishes during March’s BQA Grand Prix quiz.

At the top of the leaderboard, Pat Gibson secured back-to-back Grand Prix victories by just 0.2 points from Didier Bruyere. The margins were similarly tight in the genres with five of the six requiring tiebreakers to separate the medals, with Wales’ Gareth Aubrey and David Cowan missing out in Civilisation by 0.1 and 0.2 points respectively.

Scores from Wales’ many representatives can be found below and all the scores and ranking details can be found on the QUEST website. The next Grand Prix is on Saturday April 6th at venues around the UK, if you would like to try your hand against Britain’s best quizzers you can find out more about what goes on and how you can take part in the Events section of this site.

Gareth Aubrey – 114.7 (20th)
Gareth Kingston – 111.5 (32nd)
David Cowan – 109.9 (41st)
Ian Orriss – 108.8 (46th)
David Edwards – 107.5 (52nd)
Jeff Evans – 104.4 (59th)
Ian Welham – 102.6 (71st)
Andrew Teale – 102.3 (73rd)
Alan Morgan – 101.6 (75th)
Iwan Thomas – 96.7 (94th)
Phill Price – 74.4 (151st)
Nicki Cockburn – 63.2 (168th)
Rhys Winwood – 62.3 (170th)

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Cardiff Sees First Grand Prix Action of 2019

BQA Grand Prix quizzing returned to Cardiff for the first time in 2019, as quizzers in the capital were among 186 competitors at venues around the UK.

Reigning British and European champion Pat Gibson took a dominant victory with 132.0 points, 4.5 clear of the current Brain Of London, David Stainer with World #4 Didier Bruyere a further point back. The Welsh contingent had a quiet day in the overall standings, although Mark Grant’s 17th-overall finish included a silver medal in Civilisation and we were pleased to welcome Hywel Matthews to his first Grand Prix.

Full Welsh results are shown below and you can find all the scores and the current UK rankings positions on the QUEST website. The next BQA Grand Prix is on 2 March and Cardiff will once again be one of the venues, you can find out more about what goes on and how you can take part in the Events section of this site.

Mark Grant – 114.4 (17th)
David Cowan – 105.4 (37th)
Gareth Aubrey – 103.6 (42nd)
Ian Orriss – 101.7 (44th)
Jeff Evans – 98.5 (57th)
Gareth Kingston – 98.4 (61st)
Andrew Teale – 94.6 (78th)
Alan Morgan – 94.4 (82nd)
Lawrence Cook – 89.4 (99th)
Ian Welham – 86.4 (105th)
Anthony Fish – 85.1 (112th)
William Townsend – 81.4 (117th)
Hywel Matthews – 67.0 (156th)
Phill Price – 59.0 (169th)
Rhys Winwood – 57.0 (174th)

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Positive Start To 2019 At Birmingham Grand Prix

There were plenty of positives for Wales’ quizzers at the first BQA Grand Prix of 2019, as just over 100 of the UK’s top quizzers assembled at the Cadbury Club in Bournville.

Kevin Ashman took the overall victory with 133.9 points, four clear of his Eggheads team-mate Pat Gibson with the Chaser, Paul Sinha, another two back in third. Wales’ star performer was Andrew Teale who took the gold medal in the Civilisation genre with a huge 29.4 points out of 31. Mark Grant took bronze in that category too (on his way to a Wales-best 11th place overall) and Brian Chesney also scored a bronze medal in Art & Culture. We also welcomed Cian Roberts to his first Grand Prix, hopefully of many.

The Welsh scores are shown below and you can find full results on the QUEST website. There are venues across the UK holding the next QUEST Grand Prix event on 2 February, including one in Cardiff which we hope to confirm shortly. You can find out more about what goes on and how you can take part in the Events section of this site.

Mark Grant – 115.2 (11th)
David Edwards – 112.4 (16th)
Gareth Aubrey – 101.1 (34th)
Alan Morgan – 98.5 (39th)
Gareth Kingston – 98.4 (40th)
Brian Chesney – 98.4 (41st)
David Cowan – 94.4 (50th)
Jeff Evans – 93.6 (53rd)
Andrew Teale – 93.0 (54th)
Ian Welham – 92.2 (56th)
Iwan Thomas – 88.9 (60th)
Nicki Cockburn – 64.0 (109th)
Lauren Hamer – 59.2 (117th)
Phill Price – 59.2 (118th)
Cian Roberts – 49.0 (121st)

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