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No conferring: University of Reading gets its fingers on the buzzer – University of Reading

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No conferring: University of Reading gets its fingers on the buzzer

Release Date 06 November 2006

The University of Reading is to field a team on tonight's University Challenge programme (November 6 2006). Four students – Jon Shonk (captain), Jameson Wooders, Warren Read and Daniel Gregory - took on 2005's champions Corpus Christi College, Oxford. The show was recorded earlier this year and while we know how they got on, we won't spoil the fun for the fans. The team auditioned along with some 250 others teams from across the country in May this year before making it through to the first round, filmed in Manchester with host Jeremy Paxman. Jon Shonk, aged 25 and studying a PhD in Meteorology, said: "It was a great experience. Corpus Christi has a great quizzing pedigree and our performance against them was by no means underwhelming. There was a wide range of question standards and while we struggled with one or two, including a spectacularly bad answer involving Ulysses, we felt we did well overall. "Behind the scenes Paxman doesn't sneer quite as much as he is made out to on TV and was encouraging, however once the cameras were rolling it was different. He did sneer at me for a perfectly reasonable, albeit random guess, but I suppose that is par for the course. One expects to be mocked at the hands of Paxman, it's all part of the fun." University Challenge was started in 1962, running on ITV with legendary quizmaster Bamber Gascoigne until 1987. In 1994 a new run of the programme started on BBC2, presented by Jeremy Paxman. Around 250 universities and colleges apply for entry, and a tough interview process reduces this to only 28 teams for the show. The series takes a knockout format with the 14 first round winners advancing to the second round. The four highest scoring losers from the first round then play a single knockout round between them, with the two winners progressing. From then on, only the winner advances. The show will air tonight (Monday November 6 2006) at 8.30pm on BBC2. Further information For further information contact Lucy Ferguson, Senior Press Officer, on 0118 378 7388, or email

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