Countdown: The goodbye Carol Vorderman quiz

The presenter has resigned, and Channel 4 is looking for areplacement. Katy Guest puts prospective candidates to the test
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The Independent Online

Channel 4 is looking for a new presenter with "excellent numeracy and literacy skills as well as charm and charisma" to replace the irreplaceable Carol Vorderman on 'Countdown'. First Des O'Connor announced that he was about to step down as presenter, and then Vorderman quit, after she was given 48 hours to walk away or take a 90 per cent cut in her £1m salary. For someone with such excellent numeracy skills as Vorderman's, it was a no-brainer. Vorderman helped her late co-host Richard Whiteley (the Mayor of Wetwang) to bring the programme a cult status, and even won the heart of George Clooney when he caught the show on a visit to Britain. Now Channel 4 is staging a Mensa-style quiz to try to find her replacement. Could you be the one?

1. Which of the following numbers does not fit into this sequence?

a) £200,000 a year...

b) £500,000 a year...

c) £1m a year...

d) £100,000 a year or find yourself another job.

2. 'Countdown' survived without Richard Whiteley and it can survive without Carol Vorderman.

True or false?

3. Which is the odd one out?

a) Size 10

b) Size 6

c) Size zero

d) 32DD

4. The species Trinny and Susannah is also known as which of the following?

a) One big number and one tiny little number, please.

b) Several consonants short of an eight-letter word.

c) A real 'Countdown' conundrum.

d) An anorexic transvestite and a carthorse in a binliner (© Vorderman).

5. When each of the following words is rearranged, one of them can be used to prefix the others to give three longer words.


6. What letter should appear next in this eight-letter sequence?


7. The salary bill for one presenter and one maths genius is £2,000,000.50.

One presenter plus one old man in a jumper in dictionary corner costs £3,000,000.

A maths genius and an old man in a jumper would set you back £1,000,000.50.

Find the value of x, where x = the maths genius.

8. Rearrange the order of the following words and place one on each row of a grid. If placed correctly, one column will contain the name of an important location in the East Riding of Yorkshire.


9. What is 10 per cent of £1m?

10. Rearrange the following letters to make a popular phrase or saying:


11. Which four-letter word connects all the following words?


12. Which is the odd one out and why?

a) Richard Whiteley

b) Richard Stilgoe

c) Richard Digance

d) Carol Vorderman

13. History:

Which Channel 4 programme was introduced by its host in 1982 with the words: "As the countdown to a brand new channel ends, a brand new 'Countdown' begins"?

14. General knowledge:

Carol Vorderman studied:

a) maths at Oxford University

b) engineering at Cambridge University

c) media studies at Wetwang Polytechnic

d) a degree in hard knocks at the University of Life?

15. Geography:

Is the 'Countdown' studio in Leeds:

a) very close to Des Lynam's home in Worthing, West Sussex

b) quite far from Des Lynam's home in Worthing, West Sussex

c) bloody miles from Des Lynam's home in Worthing, West Sussex

d) too far to commute from Des Lynam's home in Worthing, West Sussex?

16. Languages:

The pilot episode of which show was derived from the French programme, 'Des chiffres et des lettres'?