Sweet revenge as Caius crowned University Challenge champions

Olly Hudson 13 April 2015

Gonville and Caius have emerged as the 2015 University Challenge champions, after seeing off Magdalen College, Oxford, decisively in this year’s final.

The final tallies saw Caius on a dominating 255 points to Magdalen’s 105.

The victory comes just days after the dark blues trounced Cambridge in both the men’s and women’s Boat Races, the second such defeat in as many years.

The 21st series of the popular television quiz show saw Cauis’ Ted Loveday, Michael Taylor, Anthony Martinelli and Jeremy Warner face off against Magdalen Oxford’s Harry Gillow, Chris Savory, Hugh Binnie and Cameron Quinn.

This is the second consecutive victory for Cambridge after last year’s fast-paced final saw Trinity College score 250 points to Somerville College's 135.

Law student Ted Loveday found himself elevated to cult status in anticipation of the final, with the hashtag #allyouneedisloveday taking hold on Twitter amid much admiration of his cream cable knit pullover.

Speaking to The Cambridge Student about the victory, team captain Martinelli said: "It's pretty satisfying to have made it clear that while Oxford may have the brawn on the river, it's Cambridge, or rather Caius, that has the brains."

Caius led from the offset, taking the first starter for 10 and the following three bonus questions. Magdalen toiled in earnest but remained on the coattails of their Cantabrigian rivals throughout.

Caius pulled away decisively within the closing 10 minutes, in large part thanks to repeated scoring from Loveday.

Newnham first-year and all-round fangirl, Elinor Clapson, enthused: “Ted was amazing. He really has it all – the brains, the hair, the facial expressions. All you need is Loveday.”

One a more sober note, this was the second consecutive year in which the University Challenge final has not featured a single female contestant. Quizmaster Jeremy Paxman raised concern in his opening remarks in one of this year's semi-finals, asking: "Why on earth are there no women left in this stage of the competition?"

Cambridge now counts its total series wins at four since the 1994 revamp of the program, still three short of Oxford University’s seven victories. Cambridge now lies in joint second with Manchester University for total series wins.