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Meet the Brain of Mensa!

Fri, 20/01/2017
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He's won Mastermind, so how does winner David Clark think Brain of Mensa compares? BRIAN PAGE finds out

Stunned, surprised, delighted . . . just a few of the emotions that went through David Clark’s mind when he realised he had triumphed in the 2016 Brain of Mensa competition.

“It has always been an ambition of mine to win this title,” David said, “and so I am really thrilled.

“I’m particularly pleased because the other people in the final are all well known as being very good quizzers, so it is something of an honour.”

David is no stranger to general knowledge glory – he won Mastermind in 2007. But, he says, this win ranks way up there with anything he has achieved.

“Mastermind is obviously tough and nothing will compare with winning that show – but I genuinely believe that this is harder in general knowledge terms than Mastermind.

I think it is the hardest individual quiz that I have ever been in.”

David says he also enjoys the Brain of Mensa competition because of the camaraderie among the players.

“I joined Mensa in 2013 and got through to the final in 2014 where I came third. I have to say that the people I have met both then and in this year’s competition have been really nice people.”

Having battled through the first and semi-final rounds, in the final David came up against some very handy opposition including previous winners Les Hurst and Ray Ward, along with Andrew Ward.

“They are all very, very good so it was tough,” David said. “Going into the final round I knew I was in with a chance but even so when the scorer read out the results you could have knocked me down with a feather. It was a shock

“I can’t even remember what the results were only that I had won!”

David, an English teacher from Port Talbot in South Wales, says his strengths lie in literature and history and the arts rather than science “although I can cope with the science questions when needed”.

And, he insists modestly, he was fortunate on the day. “The questions did fall my way!”

The final took place during the Annual Gathering in London and thanks must go again to the competition organiser Brian Daugherty for coming up with the questions and acting as quiz master.

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