Saturday, 8 February 2014

Brain of Britain - Heat 9

Monday’s heat pitted
Gareth Aubrey,
Ewen McPherson,
Christine Moorcroft and
Peter Watson

Gareth was a member of the County Councillors team, quarter finalists in series One of Only Connect. He was also a series winner in University Challenge with the University of Manchester. Christine and Ewen have both been first round contenders on Mastermind. So there was plenty of previous, as it were, amongst these contenders.

Gareth took his first, but nobody knew “English Journey” by J.B.Priestley. Not surprised. Ewen took his first two but nobody knew Cape Breton Island was part of Nova Scotia. Christine didn’t know that argon derives its name from the Greek for Lazy. Peter didn’t know that Collingwood was born in Newcastle and buried near Nelson. Christine had that.. A dear friend of mine from University lived in Tynemouth, and the back of her house looked directly out onto Collingwood’s statue, but I digress. Ewen had the early lead, then. Gareth didn’t know the Brougham carriage, and so Peter took the bonus. Ewen missed his own first, not knowing that Columbia is the female personification of America. Tricky but gettable, although nobody had it. Christine took a couple, but missed out on Elba, giving Gareth the bonus. Peter was denied Jaba for Juba- although they thought long and hard before ruling it out, which gave Gareth a bonus. That was enough to give him a one point lead. Gareth didn’t know his first, about the composer Albinoni. Not surprised. Ewen took a first, but missed out on Malaria, giving Peter a bonus. Christine answered her first but missed General Jaruzelski of Poland, which gave Ewen a bonus. Peter didn’t know that Australian cricketers call the score of 6 a Dorothy. Nobody had it – not surprised. Now Ewen led again with 4. Gareth took 4, but sadly missed on a set of Turkish resorts on the Black Sea. Ewen salvaged that bonus for himself. His own first he missed on the Beguine. Peter took that. Christine probably should have linked Elizabeth Barrett Browning with Wimpole Street, and it gave Gareth the bonus. Peter didn’t know a kickstand on a motor bike, and so Gareth had now stretched the lead to 8 points, leading from Ewen’s 6.

The Beat the Brains interval asked the brains, firstly, what connected Miss Mowbray, Master Robert and others. None of us had a Scooby that they had all won the Grand National. Fair enough. They did know that the horses have to jump 30 obstacles during the race itself.

Back to the contest. Gareth didn’t know that Gerhard Schroeder was nicknamed Audi Man. No bonus for anyone there. Ewen didn’t know that the Trans Saharan highway ends in Nigeria. Christine didn’t know that Lorde comes from New Zealand, but Gareth guessed it. Peter didn’t know that a Sergeant Baker is a fish. Christine guessed that one. Gareth had stretched the lead by another point. Going first in the next round he maybe should have known the old chestnut that Marlowe coined the phrase ‘the face that launched a thousand ships’ in “Doctor Faustus”. That bonus was snapped up by Peter. Ewen bridged the gap to some extent by taking his first two, but didn’t know that lumbrical muscles are in the hand or foot. Nasty that, and no bonus to anyone. Christine didn’t know that “Thoughts on the Education of Daughters” was written by Mary Wollstonecraft. Peter had that. As for his own set, Peter, who’d had a good round so far, took his first two, but didn’t know that in South Africa a kloof is a steep sided ravine. That bonus went to Ewen. So Peter had pulled himself up to 8, just one point behind joint leaders Gareth and Ewen. Gareth took his first, but missed the Apostle bird for his second. Peter had that. Ewen crucially missed his first, not knowing that Ceylon officially became Sri Lanka in the 1970s. All the others had a stab, but it was Peter Watson who took the spoils with the correct answer. Christine was asked what record Greer Garson set at the Academy Awards. She didn’t know, but Peter Watson knew that she gave the longest acceptance speech. The leader now, Peter started his run for home with 2, but didn’t know that the triclinium in a roman house was the dining room. Ewen had it. Out of the blue, Russell announced that this had been the final round. Which meant that Peter, who had never led until this very last round, had done it! What a well timed run! Many congratulations.

The Details

Gareth Aubrey – 10
Ewen McPherson – 10
Christine Moorcroft – 4
Peter Watson – 13

1 comment:

Stephen Follows said...

Actually, Russell did say announce the final round before it started (with the words 'as we enter the final round'). That's certainly true of the podcast, at least, which I've just listened to, a fortnight late.